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Facebook to Launch Simpler Privacy Controls Tomorrow

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Facebook will launch “drastically simplified” privacy controls tomorrow, the site’s VP of product, Chris Cox, said today at the TechCrunch Disrupt conference in New York City. Cox said the Facebook team has had an “intense and humbling couple of weeks” amidst outcry over confusing and invasive privacy controls. But until now — aside from the occasional condescending Q&A and avoiding-the-big-issues op-ed — Facebook has largely kept quiet.

Facebook VP product Chris Cox

Cox said that he doesn’t believe the fuss over privacy is just an overblown media story. “A lot of people really care [about privacy],” he said. Cox tried to justify Facebook’s reticence on the issue by saying the team didn’t want to just talk about better privacy controls, it wanted to have products to show for its efforts, built with the input of advocacy groups. And tomorrow that will happen, with a wide rollout of new features and descriptions of what they mean for users.

As for upcoming location features, Cox said the company would talk about what it’s doing when it has a product ready for users. “A lot of things on Facebook happen in the context of location,” he said. “In the long run, we’re a platform company. We want something where users can have whatever data they’re interacting with.”

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12 Responses to “Facebook to Launch Simpler Privacy Controls Tomorrow”

  1. “the company would talk about what it’s doing when it has a product ready for users.” (Do they still think they are a startup?)

    So in the future this can all happen again?! We’ll have another event when all we’ll hear from them is “You WILL like this.”

    I have no problem with profiting, I do it myself. But with my customers, I don’t pretend to do one thing and then switch it up to something that benefits me at their expense, telling them I did it for their goodness. And I certainly wouldn’t create a new service for my customers without knowing that most of them wanted it ahead of time. That’s a waste of cash. What happened to ‘finding out what the customer wants and then doing THAT?’

    You’d think they would learn… iterating what THEY want hasn’t worked for years. Zuck needs to realize that he is not a Bill Gates. He can’t lock us in.

    Dump facebook, folks. I know, your ‘friends’ are there. Well, your real friends will go to wherever you’re at.

    Or, you can keep on letting the Zuck do something with you that rhymes with…

  2. Of course, in rolling out the new privacy controls, facebook will need to scrap all previous privacy profile settings thus making everything connected to your profile accessible by everyone until you the user figure out how to configure the blasted thing the way you want it again. And as soon as 75% of the facebook population figures it out, they’ll roll out “new and simplified” privacy control settings.

  3. What happens to the old data which they have already given away. I want it back. I know a lot of companies that have taken the data available and have dumped it into their own databases. What about that. I think it is something FB should be held accountable.