Facebook Privacy

Category: Facebook , Privacy , Social-Networking

I've switched from Myspace to Facebook because I was unhappy with the privacy controls there, and I've been told that Facebook lets you control this much better. Would you please go over the Facebook privacy settings and recommend which ones I should focus on?

Facebook privacy settings

Privacy Options In Facebook

The amount of privacy control on Facebook is amazing. And the settings on which you need to focus are really up to you. But here's a rundown on the privacy options that you can twiddle to make sure you're sharing only the personal information as you want to share, with the people that you choose. To get started, login to your Facebook profile, and click the privacy link at the top right part of the Facebook window, and decide what you're comfortable allowing others to view.

On the Privacy Overview page, you have the option of controlling who can see your profile, your findability on Facebook and other search engines, and how much of your Facebook activity will be public. As you change the options, you'll see that the little bar graphs on the right will change, giving you a quick visual indication of the privacy strength of each setting.

Edit Your Facebook Privacy Settings

Click Edit Settings next to Profile and you can control who can sees your profile (or various portions of it), by selecting something along the spectrum of the inclusive "All my networks and all my friends" or "Only my friends" to the more private "Only me" or "No one" options. The same applies to your status, videos, photos, friends list, and your wall comments. You also have fine control over your contact information, including your address, phone, website and e-mail address. Remember that if you opt to leave that wide open, plan on getting some unwanted emails. If you want others to know what Applications you are running, this page is also where you make that choice. Press Save down at the bottom of the page when you're done, and you'll be returned to the Privacy Overview page.

Facebook profile privacy settings

When it comes to Search on Facebook, you control who can find you and what appears in your listing. In addition, you have the option of being listed by external search engines, good if you want others to freely Google you, not good if you would prefer to keep on the quiet side of the Internet. Finally, once someone has found you, you can choose what they can figuratively do with you, such as send you a picture, poke you, send you a message, or view your other friends. Watch that last one if you have a nosy boss, friend or neighbor.

When I first discovered Facebook, I found it unnerving that every time I checked in, a Newsfeed let everyone know what I was doing on Facebook. I didn’t think I wanted to be quite that demonstrative, so that was the first box that I un-checked. You can also control just how much your actions show up in your friends’ news feeds. Although the feeds will never divulge information you have marked as private, they do let your entire network know what events you attended, free gifts you have received, groups you belong to, etc.

Facebook blocking You can also Block those pesky former college roommates that you didn’t like back then, much less want to put up with now. This is also very handy if you met someone online that turned out to be a mega-loser. You can select a Limited Profile, again a good thing if you tend to go online during office hours. Oh, and remember that when you get a friend request from someone else, you can choose right then if you want that person to view your full profile, or just the limited profile.

There so much that you can control, if you're not sure at first what you want to release, unclick all your options, set your limit to "Only Me" and gradually add what is best for you. If you have kids using Facebook, it's a good idea to fill these in together so that you can advise them of privacy concerns. Since the family unit typically spends more time these days on a computer rather than a dinner table, Facebook might be your own version of family unity.

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Most recent comments on "Facebook Privacy"

Posted by:

31 Aug 2007

I won't touch FaceBook with a 10 foot pole. They have a horrid user agreement that basically says you have to keep your info current, that anything you post on the site is owned by them, that they can share your personal info with third parties, and so forth. MySpace has a much cleaner agreement.

If you must have a profile there, focus on linking it to a free Blog. Keep your content where its yours. As always, never put anything on the Net you wouldn't want the world to see, including your boss and parents.

Secondly, Its NOT secure. Other people have lifted thousands of profiles off of the servers and the news feeder feeds everything, including stuff you have set to "Private".

EDITOR'S NOTE: The Facebook user agreement is rather onerous. But for the vast majority of the people who use it, the fact that they "own" the content you post there means little or nothing. As for the scraping of profiles and private feeds, I'm almost positive these are problems that were fixed long ago. I can't find any recent news stories about this.

Posted by:

31 Aug 2007

I went on Facebook because someone suggested it was a great way to do promotion. I work at a university and I wanted to outreach for my program to our students as an enhancement to our website.

Well, I ended up with was hundreds of virus laden spam email that continues to arrive despite my signing off the site (you never really get to go off the site...they leave your information in case you change your mind). Since this is the only site I signed up for with this particular email account, and I am on no lists with the account, I feel fairly safe in directing my irritation to Facebook's spam community.

I also signed up on Myspace with another address. It's not great but the virus spam is nothing like that which came swarming out of the Facebook connection. I will never go back to Facebook again. I would not have stayed on Facebook even if the spam had not been such a hideous problem. It was incredibly slow to do any updates on, and the interface seemed decidedly unfriendly. The experience was the worst I've had on a social networking site. I am puzzled by its popularity, I truly am.

Posted by:

02 Oct 2007

I also used a separate email when registering with facebook and I must tell you - I did not get any spam! What viruses and spam you're talking about? frankly speaking that is the best social network I know today. And what truly amazes me is how can the ugly and useless myspace be so popular. well the question is probably among who! facebook and LinkedIn are two musts for everybody!

EDITOR'S NOTE: I agree... I've never gotten any spam or other unwanted emails in my Facebook signup email inbox.

Posted by:

DJ Boba Fett
23 Jan 2008

I propose an electronic Jihad against this evil fascistic dictatorship run by a child. Please read my blog at www.myspace.com/djbobafett to see my running trials and tribulations with this site. At this point, they up and cancelled me, with over 200 hours of work on my site, pages, events, profiles and advertisements. They are billing my card even though I no longer have an account. I called the Palo Alto offices at 650-543-4800 to dispute the bill (as it's ads for a deleted site they're billing me for) and had to call 3 times before a human picked up. I talked to a female Sam (supposedly the only Sam that works there, yeah right) and she said they do NOT offer voice billing support. i told her that by refusing to work with me, she is okaying my choice to dispute the charges with my credit card company. We'll see. If you have ANY problems with the site or infrastructure, please call them, ask to talk to SAM, and tell them "DJ Boba Fett sent you."

Posted by:

13 Jan 2009

So when a friend disappears and their comments remain on your wall but their name turns gray and unclickable, does that mean they have deleted their account or "unfriended" you?

When I Google their name a link comes up to their Facebook page, but when I click it it says "The page you requested was not found. You may have clicked an expired link or mistyped the address. Some web addresses are case sensitive."

EDITOR'S NOTE: Most likely they have deleted their account. If they unfriended you, it would say "you can't view this person's page unless you are their friend."

Posted by:

30 May 2009

I found someone I knew on FB through Google and clicked "Add as friend" but I never got an acceptance notice. When I searched on him today, I could no longer find him and when I clicked on his FB link on Google search, it said "The page you requested was not found. You may have clicked an expired link or mistyped the address". Does that mean he deleted his account or did he block me?

EDITOR'S NOTE: Sounds like he deleted his account.

Posted by:

31 May 2009

Hello, May I ask you something else that is Facebook related? I have created a group that was accessible at Facebook.com/OntheBallBowling.com. However for the last two weeks when I try to reach the page from the above mentioned url I get the following error message - "You may have clicked an expired link or mistyped the address. Some web addresses are case sensitive.". Do you have any idea why and how can I fix it. Thank you. Peter

Posted by:

14 Aug 2009

This question was asked a few months ago, and I get the same prompt, but their cached page still updates and they are still active in group and on there people's friends list. When I am not logged into FB I can see their page, when I'm logged in, I'm prompted "The page you requested was not found. You may have clicked an expired link or mistyped the address. Some web addresses are case sensitive."

Posted by:

27 Aug 2009

Everytime I try to click on my profile I get

"The page you requested was not found. You may have clicked an expired link or mistyped the address. Some web addresses are case sensitive."

Is there anyway to fix this?

Posted by:

06 Oct 2009

John Writes:

"Everytime I try to click on my profile I get

"The page you requested was not found. You may have clicked an expired link or mistyped the address. Some web addresses are case sensitive."

Is there anyway to fix this?"

You are not alone john, my profiles that way too

Posted by:

12 Nov 2009

Ahhhh... the question everyone seems to want answered. Is there a way to view who is visiting your profile or is this just a hoax?

EDITOR'S NOTE: It cannot be done, to the best of my knowledge. Doing so would violate the FB terms of service.

Posted by:

15 Apr 2010

I recently email a friend and even though the message was sent, some even went through before and after it...a coouple of them showed up in my inbox as well as my sent box...what does that mean? Have they blocked email from me to their account?

Posted by:

10 May 2010

i've actually had a lot of trouble with the page requested not found error.

my issue is that when i try to go to http://www.facebook.com/artsmartinc without being logged in, i get that page error. when i try when logged in, it shows up fine.

is there a solution to this? or is it a bug on facebooks end?

Posted by:

19 Jun 2010

Editor, when people block you, it will say The page you requested was not found when you try to view the profile. I have confirmed this.

Posted by:

Richard J. Reese tweetaddercouponhttp://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nFE8Amle7c4
18 Oct 2011

Ola! Askbobrankin,
I just stumbled across this and How to set my photographs at facebook non-public? and how to set them up only for consumers i can trust like most people i have detailed as acquaintances ? I dont want manifeste viewers to see my info profile about me and the photographs.. SO how to set it up privacy ?
Kindest Regards

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