Facebook’s New Privacy Settings

By Rob McNair

Today Facebook have announced several improvements that make it easier to share posts, photos, tags and other content with exactly the people you want.

Inline Profile Controls

Before: Most of the settings on profiles were a few clicks away on a series of settings pages.

Now: Content on profiles, from hometown to your latest photo album, will appear next to an icon and a drop-down menu. This inline menu lets you know who can see this part of your profile, and it can changed with just one click.

Content Tag Review

Before: Anyone who could see your photos or posts could add tags to them.

Now: You have the option to review and approve or reject any tag someone tries to add to your photos and posts.

View Profile As

Before: Facebook wanted to know what your profile looked like to others, but the tool for doing this was behind the scenes.

Now: This tool is now on the top of your profile where it’s easier to access.

When You Share

In addition to the profile changes, it will now be more visually straightforward to understand and control who can see your posts at the time you share them. Facebook are also broadening the functionality of the sharing tool, now if you want to make your posts more expressive, they made it simple to add location and tag the people you’re with.

Before: Controls for who could see your information on Facebook was on a settings page a few clicks away.

Going Forward: The control for who can see each post will be right inline. For each audience, there is now an icon and label to help make it easier to understand and decide who you’re sharing with. Also, when you tag someone, the audience label will automatically update to show that the person tagged and their friends can see the post.

This drop down menu will be expanding over time to include smaller groups of people you may want to share with, like co-workers, friend lists you’ve created, and Groups you’re a member of. These will make it easy to quickly select exactly the audience you want for any post.

Word Change: “Everyone” to “Public

Before: You had the option to share a post with Everyone, which meant that anyone on the internet might be able to see it.

Now: We are changing the name of this label from Everyone to Public so that the control is more descriptive of the behavior: anyone may see it, but not everyone will see it. This is just to make the setting more clear, and it’s just a language change.

Change Your Mind After You Post?

Before: Once you posted a status update, you couldn’t change who could see it.

Now: Now you’ll be able to change who can see any post after the fact. If you accidentally posted something to the wrong group, or changed your mind, you can adjust it with the inline control at any time.

Tag Who You’re With, or What You Want to Talk About

Before: You could only tag someone if you were friends with them, and you could only tag a Page if you had liked it.

Now: You can add tags of your friends or anyone else on Facebook. If you are ever tagged by a non-friend, it won’t appear on your profile unless you review and approve the post.

Tag Locations in Posts

Before: You could only “check in” to locations using the Places feature on a smart phone.

Now: You can add location to anything. Lots of people use Facebook to talk about where they are, have been or want to go. Now you can add location from anywhere, regardless of what device you are using, or whether it is a status update, photo or Wall post.

Removing Tags or Content

Before: Facebook asked people had different ideas of what removing a tag actually did and different motivations for wanting to remove them.

Now: There are severals options for removing a post these options are: removing from your profile, removing the tag itself, messaging the photo owner or tagger, and requesting the content get taken down.

These changes will begin in the coming days. When they reach you, you’ll see a prompt for a tour that walks you through these new features from your homepage.

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This post was written by Rob McNair

Rob has experience advising some of the worlds most iconic brands. He thrives on helping improving social media knowledge within organisations with the ultimate goal of making theirs brands more social, transparent and accountable.