Facebook Facing Foibles with FTC


This afternoon the Wall Street Journal reported that ten privacy organization assisted by the Electronic Privacy Information Center (EPIC) have formally filed complaints with the Federal Trade Commission for Facebook's recent website changes to its privacy settings. The company spends a lot of time and money trying to mitigate government scrutiny and interference in its business. The problem here is Facebook has made "privacy" part of their business. The 350 million users of Facebook have a wide range of understanding and awareness regarding what the company does to both protect and stretch the end user's social graph as it relates to privacy. I voiced my opinion on other blogs that the average Facebook user would have difficulty understanding the privacy setting pop-up screen in the context of logging in to the system. While it did provide the option to reset the settings to those previously configured, the settings were altered during the conversion to allow search engine indexing until you went in to actively reset them. Your personal profile information and photos were set to "everyone" until you logged in to reset them. Not sure if the company has a strong consumer privacy advocate to balance the development and marketing organizations.