Facebook backtracks after online privacy protest
Posted in: Legal, Privacy & Security at 20/02/2009 01:07
Facebook is under unprecedented scrutiny for its policies on retention of personal data after users criticised the site for breaching privacy. After a wave of protests, the world's largest social networking site yesterday announced that it was reversing its recent decision to keep copies of users' messages online, even after they had left the network.
Facebook 'withdraws' data changes
The founder of Facebook says the social network will return to its previous terms of service regarding user data.
In a blog post Mark Zuckerberg said the move was temporary "while we resolve the issues that people have raised".
Users force Facebook to withdraw controversial 'copyright' plan
Facebook has withdrawn controversial changes to its terms of service after receiving a storm of complaints from users of the social networking website.
Tens of thousands of posters protested after an unannounced change seemed to grant Facebook the right to control and use the information posted by account holders on the site for ever, even if they had cancelled their accounts.
Facebook Inc.'s latest capitulation to offended users offered another reminder of the social network's power for self-criticism.
Facebook Withdraws Changes in Data Use
Facebook, the popular social networking site where people share photos and personal updates with friends and acquaintances, lost some face on Wednesday.
After three days of pressure from angry users and the threat of a formal legal complaint by a coalition of consumer advocacy groups, the company reversed changes to its contract with users that had appeared to give it perpetual ownership of their contributions to the service.
Facebook disavowed any such intentions but said early Wednesday that it was temporarily rescinding the changes and restoring an earlier version of its membership contract.
In a message to members, the company, based in Palo Alto, Calif., said it would collaborate with users to create a more easily understandable document.
Facebook's chief executive, Mark Zuckerberg, also invited users to contribute to a new Bill of Rights and Responsibilities, which would serve as a governing document for the site. Facebook has been redefining notions of privacy while growing so rapidly that it now has 175 million active users, giving it a population larger than most countries.
Facebook Backs Into a 'Bill of Rights'
For the past week or so, a dense clot of legalese has been one of the most talked-about texts on the Internet. This document lacks a plot or a setting, but it's still been a compelling -- sometimes enraging -- read for users of the Web's largest social network, Facebook.
The Palo Alto, Calif., company revised its terms of service, which govern how more than 175 million people use the site, in early February. The changes didn't immediately seem like big news; I don't remember seeing a note about them on the site, much less reading them.
Facebook's About-Face on Data
Facebook Inc.'s retreat from changes to its terms of service highlights a debate over the ownership of user information on social-networking sites, and the increasingly important role such data play in company business models.
Facebook announced the decision late Tuesday evening, as a coalition of privacy advocates were preparing to file a formal complaint against the new policy with the Federal Trade Commission.