Facebook's Privacy Policy Gets a Facelift

Lora Bentley
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Check out highlights from Lora's poll of industry experts on the topic of online security.

Facebook has taken a lot of hits over the years about its privacy policy: It's always changing, it's too long, it's always changing, it's not in plain English, it's always changing. As such, it should come as no surprise that the social networking site released yet another version of the privacy policy last week.


But this one, according to The Wall Street Journal, does not actually change the terms of the policy. Instead, the company has simplified the language and applied the "Facebook design experience that we bring to everything we do" to the privacy policy, the company's privacy and product counsel, Edward Palmieri, explained.


That means the new document includes screen shots and is organized into sections like "Your information and how it is used" and "how advertising works," among others. Palmieri explained:

We struggle with really hitting home to users that we do not sell their data to advertisers.

The screen shots depicting what advertisers can actually see about Facebook users are designed to reinforce that.


Privacy advocates, however, are not necessarily pleased with the changes. Not that anyone is surprised by that detail. American Civil Liberties Union of Northern California Policy Director Nicole Ozer noted:

It is very good for companies to actually be making privacy policies easier to understand -- but users should be looking for privacy policies that are not only readable, but actually protect their privacy.

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