It is not easy to keep up to date with how Facebook changes. Some things change for better, some for worse. Can you be sure that you didn't miss the latest update of Facebook's terms of service? Here's the second post in a series about how to protect you privacy when using Facebook.
False Privacy Notice
In November Facebook published a decision that users will no longer have the opportunity to vote on proposed changes. Along with this decision some changes regarding the Data Use Policy were announced.
As a result many Facebook users posted and shared a privacy notice on their Facebook wall in an attempt to keep control over their data. It reads:
"In response to the new Facebook guidelines I hereby declare that my copyright is attached to all of my personal details, illustrations, graphics, comics, paintings, photos and videos, etc. (as a result of the Berner Convention). For commercial use of the above my written consent is needed at all times! ..."
It is important, however, to realise that such a declaration does not affect Facebook's Terms of Service which state clearly that by posting any content on Facebook users grant Facebook extensive rights:
"For content that is covered by intellectual property rights, like photos and videos (IP content), you specifically give us the following permission, subject to your privacy and application settings: you grant us a non-exclusive, transferable, sub-licensable, royalty-free, worldwide license to use any IP content that you post on or in connection with Facebook (IP License)." (Statement of Rights and Responsibilities)
The new photo feature allows you to see all photos that are tagged with your name and remove the tags with one click. You can also send a message to the person who posted the photo and ask them to remove the picture completely.
Scanning of private messages
If you use Facebook for sending private messages to your friends you should be aware that Facebook scans all of your messages. This was discovered after monitoring the counter of Facebook's Like button.
Generally the Like counter increases by one when a user clicks a Like button. It also goes up when the URL (address) of its website is shared or when there are comments or likes of a Facebook post that includes the URL of its website.
However, what was unknown to most is that the counter in Like buttons goes up when a website is mentioned in a private message which implies that Facebook regularly scans all private messages.
Knowing this can help you understand that even those things that you perceive as private on Facebook are never really private but can and will always be accessed. An easy way to avoid this is using email instead of Facebook messages.
Another new Facebook feature is the option to promote specific posts by paying for its promotion. This leads to the posts being displayed also for people who are not your friends. You may also now be seeing such promoted posts in your Facebook timeline by pages or people who you have not interacted with before. But it is also possible that your picture and name appear in such a Sponsored Story which is nothing but an ad that is displayed to people that are strangers to you.
The consumer Ombudsmen of Norway, Sweden and Denmark have issued a complaint to the European Commissioner for Health and Consumer Policy about possible privacy violations through promoted posts. And in the US a class action lawsuit was filed against the use of Sponsored Stories on the grounds that it turns users into spokespeople and endorsers without their direct approval. Facebook offered to pay $20 million to settle the case and was so far granted preliminary approval.
Go to the first post in the series: Things to know about recent changes in Facebook
Source of image: http://rack.1.mshcdn.com/media/ZgkyMDEyLzEyLzA0L2M5L2ZhY2Vib29rd3JpLmJHcy5qcGcKcAl0aHVtYgkxMjAweDYyNyMKZQlqcGc/1d038019/315/facebook-writes-its-privacy-policy-in-a-language-humans-can-read-ffe5f9f623.jpg