Facebook tightens privacy on third-party programs

Feb 18, 2010
Facebook has given users more control over who gets to see video, virtual cards and other digital content shared using third-party programs at the leading social networking website.

Facebook has given users more control over who gets to see video, virtual cards and other digital content shared using third-party programs at the leading social networking website.

Content sharing tools the site launched for profile pages in December are being extended to applications that outside developers make for the online community, according to Facebook engineer Ray He.

"Maybe you don't want all of your friends to see the humorous greeting card you just posted from an application," He said. "Now, you can set that post to be viewable only by certain friends."

In contrast, someone trying to rally support for a charity using a Causes application will be able to adjust privacy settings to spread posts as widely as possible.

"There are now granular privacy options that enable you to personalize the audience for each piece of content you share through applications," He said in a blog post.

Drop-down menus near lock icons in a Publisher tool on profile pages let people select sharing options ranging from "everyone" to "only friends" and "custom."

"These new controls give you the power to determine who sees the content you post to Facebook through any third-party application," He said.

Content posted through outside applications without specified sharing preferences will default to "Posts by Me" settings designated at the .

"You may also start to see additional prompts in applications asking if you'd like to set privacy for certain pieces of content that differ from your default setting," He explained. "The choice is yours."

Facebook's more than 400 million members are required to dictate settings with a software tool that lets them specify who gets to be privy to each photo, video, update or other piece of content uploaded to the website.

The tool lets Facebook members determine accessibility to posted content, such as status updates or pictures in categories designated "Friends," "Friends of Friends," "Everyone" and "Customized."

members can select for each post by using lock icons next to "share" buttons on profile pages.

Explore further: Brief Facebook outage prompts complaints on Twitter

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