Following a backlash of criticism for a new policy which permits Facebook to share user data without the user’s permission, the company has posted an update clarifying their position and announcing their decision to move forward with the policy change. It’s an awkward situation for the company as no product has officially been revealed and they don’t want to disclose product features to justify their policy change.
In addition to justifying the change, the company also noticed that much of the feedback was regarding products that already exist. The reality is that users still don’t know how to use their privacy settings effectively. While users are expected to educate themselves about Facebook’s privacy platform, many users still find the system excessively confusing.
As Barry Schnitt stated in a blog post today:
Barry also emphasized that they are still finalizing the details of how the new expanded partnerships will function, yet Facebook is insisting that it will be a small number of partners. As Schnitt states:
First, it’s important to underscore that this will be a test with a handful of carefully selected partners to provide express personalization on their sites. These partners will be pre-selected, reviewed, and bound by contracts with Facebook – much like other partners we have worked with in other contexts to deliver unique and innovative experiences. For example, we’re working with Yahoo! to integrate Facebook across their properties, AOL to integrate our chat with AIM, and we first partnered with CNN.com to make their broadcast of the Presidential Inauguration more social with the launch of the Facebook live stream application.
For now, users will have to standby with their pitchforks ready to find out what Facebook has in store.