Facebook updating its privacy policy – again

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Is it Thursday already? Must be time for Facebook to change its privacy policy again. Just in case you were beginning to get a grip on it.

Constant change is a hallmark of a totalitarian régime. Chairman Mao’s permanent revolution. Or my old sociopath boss, who used to just make everybody move around the office every few months just because he hated the idea that anyone was feeling comfortable or enjoying their work.

Facebook keep changing privacy in the hope that you’ll give up trying to keep on top of it, and just let everything go to the default. When you do that, they can sell more of your data. And keep changing the privacy setting so that more of your data is available by default.

The really confusing thing is this business about your friends installing apps which then have access not just to your friends‘ data, but to anything you happen to share with your friend. I guess this is the bit of the privacy policy I was puzzling over in class, the bit that says something like “How much of your data your friends bring with them when they use apps.” It’s that verb bring. It sounds friendly, you know, like “bring a bottle,” or “bring a plus-one”. What they actually mean is take. Which sounds more like stealing, or at least taking without asking.

To begin with, the company’s privacy policy is now being renamed its “Data Use Policy,” perhaps better reflecting Facebook’s shift from a single website to a platform unto itself. Other changes include clearer descriptions of some behaviors users may not be so pleased with, such as how your information is shared with Facebook apps: if one of your friends installs an app, that app will be able to access any information you’re sharing with said friend, whether you’ve approved it directly or not.

via Facebook updating its privacy policy tomorrow, users have until today to comment | The Verge.

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