Facebook’s Very Public Problems with Privacy

May 27th, 2010

With over 400 million users, Facebook is the world’s most trafficked social networking site. But recently it’s also become the most controversial. Why? One word, privacy.

The criticism has been rampant around the control, or lack thereof, of user privacy the website has implemented. The privacy controls are not user-friendly or clear for that matter. They have left many unsure of what the public can and cannot see on their pages. With the continuous success of the website, one would think Facebook would adapt more willingly to the wants and needs of their members. Lately, we have seen the opposite.

With the concerns over Facebook privacy festering, on May 25, 2010 Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg finally broke his silence on the issue. In a statement, Zuckerberg acknowledged the problems Facebook is currently having with privacy control, and admitted there were errors that needed to be fixed. He described the need for Facebook privacy settings to be easier to control for users- so they know who can and can’t see their private information. Zuckerberg concluded his statement alluding to the fact that changes will be made in the coming weeks that will better suit what users want to see.

This situation has left Facebook fighting for the credibility and loyalty they have achieved with their faithful following of users. This issue could have big implications. It’s already making some users question their relationship with the site. It’s a huge PR problem that playing out in traditional media and all over the web for the social media giant. It’s ironic that the very medium that made Facebook so powerful could now be its downfall.

We’ll have to follow this online battle closely to see if Facebook can revamp its privacy policy, win back the hearts and minds of its users and ultimately…save face.

Posted Under: Digital & Social Media
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