Facebook Privacy Settings: What’s Changed

By Larry Magid

In response to recent widespread criticism over changes made to its privacy policy in April, Facebook announced today that it has modified its user controls to make it easier to configure privacy settings and to retroactively control access to content that has already been posted. The company also said that it has “drastically reduced the amount of information that is available to everyone.”

Facebook also promised to “carry over people’s privacy choices for new products that facilitate sharing” and the company pledged to make fewer privacy changes in the future. “Facebook recognizes that the many privacy-related changes over the past year may have caused confusion, and the company will work within the framework announced today as it continues to innovate new features and products,” it said in a release.

The company announced the changes at a 10:30 AM (PST) press conference at its Palo Alto, California headquarters and wrote about it on the company blog.

New Privacy Control Center

A new “one click” privacy control center will make it easier to limit access to information to friends, friends of friends or everyone with a single click. A single grid displays all settings which makes your personal privacy profile a lot easier to understand. The company will continue to offer granular advanced settings to people who want more control.

A new “main setting” makes it easy to share on Facebook with friends, friends of friends or everyone — “all with just one click.” The corresponding settings are immediately applied and displayed in a grid. At the same time, Facebook has maintained its more granular settings for those who want to customize their level of sharing. These settings now all appear on a single page for easier access.

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