Facebook Changes – On The Personal Side

by Cindy on April 22, 2010

Yesterday, Facebook announced several changes which have been implemented and will change the way you and your personal information will be used not only on Facebook but through out the internet.  Here are some of those changes in layman’s terms:

  • Fan Button changes to Like Button:  The button which said “Become A Fan” on Facebook now says “Like.”  This in itself doesn’t really affect you or your personal profile except when you “Like” a page.
  • Like Buttons on the Internet:  Facebook has developed coding which allows any website to place a “Like” button on their website.  These can be just the button or can include the page stream, the Likers streams and avatar pictures.  This one does affect your profile and information. (see ours to the right)

If you have your privacy settings open allowing anyone to see your profile and information when they click on your avatar they will see all that you have permitted in your settings.

You can limit what is shown but clicking Account, Privacy Settings and update your settings to “Friends Only” thus limiting your exposure.

  • Several other technical changes which will be used by programmers and can be used to collect your profile data.  You may not be aware but the applications you choose to use on your profile collect your user data and by Facebook restrictions and processes were only allowed to cache (keep) that data for 24 hours.  This restriction has been removed.  To read a good blog post on how this works check out “How To Delete Facebook Applications (And Why You Should)” by Sarah Perez.

Check your applications and delete any you are not currently using.  Also, review the remain applications set-ups to see how and what they are connecting to and determine if you want the application to remain.

  • Open Graph Protocol allows partner sites such as Internet Movie Database which has “Like” buttons for their movies to add a favorites movie section to your profile.  For a look at how this works visit the CNN homepage.  On the right you see a box “Friends Activity” where stories are shown and how many have shared the information link.

You can click the “What’s This” link and you will be taken to a profile which you can set-up using your Facebook login information and this box on the home page will be personalized showing what stories your friends have “Liked” and shared.

It was announced Facebook has already partnered with 750 sites to make these types of links.

  • Sign In With Facebook – a new option for websites where you have to sign in for access to all or parts of the site.  The sites can choose to add programming which allows you to use your Facebook login information for their site as well.  By doing this it makes it easier for users – on less login to remember and also for the site to pull and use your information and data such as demographics.

Now, all of this is a big deal for businesses.  With Facebook having more than 400 million users who are connected to 130 friends and 60 pages and events on average; sharing more than 25 billion pieces of content per month – this gives businesses a far wider, more personal/social reach.

But to the personal user it presents questions, concerns and the need to be vigilant with your privacy settings and aware of any changes being made to Facebook.

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