Writing in the New York Times on 29 August, Vindu Goel reported that there were changes relating Facebook’s privacy policies that were scheduled to go into effect on Friday, September 5.
Evidently these changes have now been postponed. This revision of the plan comes as the result of an outcry against such changes in those policies.
As it is, Facebook has been derided for having controls that are so difficult to understand and difficult to navigate through, making it quite a challenge to execute one’s preferences.
In a statement sent via email and published by the Los Angeles Times on Thursday, September 6, Facebook writes:
Facebook said, “We are taking the time to ensure that user comments are reviewed and taken into consideration to determine whether further updates are necessary and we expect to finalize the process in the coming week.”
Today – Friday, September 6 - writing in the New York Times, Vindu Goel notes that the Federal Trade Commission confirmed that it had received a letter from a coalition of privacy groups asking that the FTC act to prevent those changes from taking place. The coaiition argued this point on the grounds that the specific changes that are proposed actually violate the terms of a 2011 settlement between Facebook and the FTC.
It has now become evident that it is likely that Facebook intends to use the personal information gathered through the course of user interactions in order to market targeted advertising.
What the users seem to be demanding in filing this objection with the FTC, is that Facebook has a duty to request permission from each of its 1.2 billion users – as a default position for its privacy settings – rather than to allow for their personal information to be used for any targeted marketing, by default.