Facebook brings sharing, privacy settings closer to those of Google+

Facebook logoFacebook has made a number of changes to its privacy settings to make it easier to limit shared items to certain groups, bringing it more in line with the privacy-focused Google+. In a Facebook Blog post, the company outlined how to use the slightly modified features to limit who can see various parts of your profile and wall posts, and even put permanent limits on who can tag you in photos. The changes are slowly rolling out to Facebook users "in the coming days."

Facebook was once known for its extensive privacy controls compared to MySpace, but over the years, the company's reputation in this area has diminished thanks to an increased focus on pushing users to connect to more people and share more information. Most of Facebook's granular controls have remained stuck deep within the bowels of its privacy settings, however, where only the most curious of users have managed to discover them.

Facebook is apparently aware of this problem. "The main change is moving most of your controls from a settings page to being inline, right next to the posts, photos and tags they affect," Facebook VP of Product Chris Cox wrote in Tuesday's blog post. "Your profile should feel like your home on the web—you should never feel like stuff appears there that you don't want, and you should never wonder who sees what's there."

So what are some of the changes? For one, you can now more easily specify next to every single profile element (your favorite music or your favorite books, for example) whether you want it to be public, limited to friends, or customized. Facebook is also going to make it much easier to set those same limits when making a wall post. Previously, users had to click on a not-easily-noticeable gray lock icon in order to see their sharing options, but now the company is putting this out front with a big blue button—a more obvious visual cue that the post can be limited if you want.

Source: Ars Technica

Tags: Facebook, social networks

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