Software // Social
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4/24/2009
05:27 PM
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Facebook Users Approve Terms Of Use

The changes increase user control while improving account deletion and limiting sublicenses and reducing data exchanges between application developers.

Facebook members will own and control their own information under the social networking site's new policies.

Users this week voted on a new set of terms and conditions, and most users who voted approved of a new set of Facebook Principles and Statement of Rights and Responsibilities. Along with a forthcoming new Privacy Policy, the documents represent a new Bill of Rights, so to speak, for the Facebook nation.

The Web site put forth the terms and statement after an earlier revision of the terms upset members and advocacy groups. The changes increase user control and privacy protection while improving account deletion and limiting sublicenses and reducing data exchanges between application developers.

The move resulted from online discussions among users and the company. It drew immediate praise from users and advocacy groups.

"We are pleased with the outcome," Marc Rotenberg, executive director of the Electronic Privacy Information Center, said in a statement released Friday. "Facebook addressed several privacy problems that EPIC had identified."

EPIC, which had threatened two months ago to file a complaint with the Federal Trade Commission, also praised members who campaigned for increased privacy protections. The group said that the changes reaffirm key privacy principles for Web 2.0 applications.

"There will always be privacy issues with Facebook and other popular web services," Rotenberg said. "The need for a comprehensive privacy framework is clear. But this week Facebook took an important step in support of user privacy, and we support the outcome."


InformationWeek has published an in-depth report on the business uses of social networks. Download the report here (registration required).

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