Status Update: A Privacy Hoax And Its Repercussions

Status Update: A Privacy Hoax And Its Repercussions

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If you’ve recently come across a paragraph-long Facebook privacy warning requesting you post it as your status, don’t worry about what it means – you are not alone. This “warning” that has spread across Facebook like wildfire asks you to post and share a status that will protect your images and videos from copyright infringement. But it’s a complete hoax!

These privacy hoaxes, unbeknownst of some Facebook users, germinated on the social media website a few years ago and somehow went viral again in the recent past. So, don’t worry if youfe haven’t posted the status, nothing has changed.

If you were one of the “lucky” ones, so to speak, who didn’t fall prey to this dupe, here’s what the hype was about:

  • The post contained a legal notice stating that the issuer’s profile is private property, thus forbidding Facebook to use any of their profile information.
  • Out of the various versions of the post, one stated that users had to paste content that would prevent Facebook from charging $ 9.10 for the service of maintaining your privacy.

What you need to remember about your Facebook profile is that whatever you post on it is controlled by you; all you have to do is change your settings. But, there is a catch. Whatever you post is intellectual property and Facebook owns the license to use any IP content that you post in connection with the social media website. The upside is that the IP license expires the instant you delete your content from your account.

Read on to know what privacy changes Facebook has made over the years, especially in 2014, and how it affects your virtual identity.

Intro To Basic Privacy Tools:

The privacy settings on FB allow users to control who can see what on their profile. So, with the right settings, you can avoid unnecessary photo tagging, unknown messages, and unwarranted sharing of your images and videos by strangers. Though Facebook still owns the right to use your information, you now have the right to control who else can see and share your posts. If nothing else, this tool limits the access to your information.

You And Advertisements

A common complaint people have with respect to privacy is that Facebook discloses their personal information to advertisers, which is again is not true. Though Facebook admits that it helps advertisers reach relevant audiences, it never shares any personal information with them. Now, with the new privacy options, you can even choose what kind of ads you want to see.

The Zuckersaurus-Rex

This privacy “dinosaur” is a 2014-launched tool that the company used to warn users when they are going to share things publicly. If your privacy settings haven’t been adjusted yet then odds are you have already seen this blue dino. If you’ve yet to see it, then go to the padlock icon at the top right corner of your facebook page and click on “privacy checkup”. Whether the dino has found a permanent home on your privacy menu or it is just visiting, one thing is certain, privacy for users has leveled up!

The Internet Is Forever

What the privacy hoax brought to light was the inefficient usage of privacy settings on the social networking site. It highlighted that user posts are part of the eternal world wide web and how easy it is to lose control over them, which paved the way for research on what users could do to safeguard their information. With the number of options available on the site, it is now easy to shield yourself from unwarranted attention from strangers. Facebook allows you to control what the public eye sees. Users must remember that the internet is forever, and unless you regulate what you post and who sees it, there is no guarantee it won’t come back to haunt you.

So, use your privacy settings – the same ones that still don’t cost $9.10 – to your advantage and keep your information on lockdown.

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