Marketing Pilgrim's "Social Media" Channel

Sponsor Marketing Pilgrim's Social Media Channel today! Get in front of some of the most influential readers in the Internet and social media marketing industry. Contact us today!

Facebook Data Use Policy Updated and Facial Recognition Gets Bigger

facebook-icon 1OK, let’s review.

Facebook is free to users. As a result users are implicitly giving permission to Facebook to do whatever it needs to with a user’s data. Because the service is free users really can’t complain even though they do vehemently on a regular basis about any and everything the service does.

Having established these ‘facts’, we can now look at the new changes to the Data Use Policy (once referred to as the Privacy Policy but that implied there was privacy so the name has been changed) and commence griping.

The Washington Post reports

Changes include tweaks to the company’s data use policy that clarify how Facebook uses information provided by its users in advertiserments. The proposed changes include an explicit explanation that users’ name, profile picture and information such as brands they like can be used for “commercial, sponsored or related content.” An example of this would be that a business or other company could pay Facebook to display an individual users’ name and/or profile picture without compensating individual users. Those under 18 have to show that at least one parent or guardian has also agreed to those terms on behalf of any younger users.

A post from Facebook outlines the proposed changes. They are not on the official Data Use Policy yet because there is still some form of ‘review period’ but that has changed and honestly, I lost track long ago of any systems designed to let users negate a proposed change in the service.

A lot of this ‘awareness’ is the result of Facebook’s settlement about its use of users data. From a post that outlines the proposed changes section by section in detail we get from Facebook

About Advertisements and Other Commercial Content Served or Enhanced by Facebook. As part of a legal settlement, we agreed to further explain how we may use your name, profile picture, content and information in connection with ads or commercial content. We included an example of how these ads work and explained that when you limit your audience, we’ll respect that choice. We also added a provision stating that minor users must represent that a parent or guardian has consented to this section of our terms, on their behalf.

In the end, Facebook will still have considerable control over what they do with your data. They will also tell users how they are using it. The trouble will be that most will not take the time to read through the documents which simply implies that they don’t care what Facebook does.

In the end, that’s the real story. Some who pay attention will gripe loudly while the rest use Facebook as if nothing happened. While it may seem like they do, the reality is that some things never change.