Facebook has announced a new plan to make its terms and data policy clearer without new rights to use people’s data on the platform.
In a statement released by Erin Egan, VP & Chief Privacy Officer, Policy and Ashlie Beringer, VP & Deputy General Counsel today, “It’s important to show people in black and white how our products work – it’s one of the ways people can make informed decisions about their privacy. So we’re proposing updates to our terms of service that include our commitments to everyone using Facebook.”
“We explain the services we offer in language that’s easier to read. We’re also updating our data policy to better spell out what data we collect and how we use it in Facebook, Instagram, Messenger, and other products,” they said.
These updates are about making things clearer. Facebook is not asking for new rights to collect, use or share your data on the platform. The company is also not changing any of the privacy choices you’ve made in the past. Here are a few examples of what you’ll find:
- New features and tools: Facebook is providing information on recently introduced features. Since the company last updated its terms or data policy three years ago, you can now buy and sell items on <Marketplace>, start a <fundraiser> for a cause you care about, share <Live> and <360> video, and add creative effects to your photos.
- Personalized experience: Everyone’s experience on Facebook is unique, and the company is providing more information on how this works. Facebook explains how it uses data and why it’s needed to customize the posts and ads you see, as well as the Groups, friends, and Pages we suggest.
- What we share: Facebook will never sell your information to anyone. The company has a responsibility to keep people’s information safe and secure, and it imposes strict restrictions on how its partners can use and disclose data. Facebook explains all of the circumstances where it shares information and make its commitments to people more clear.
- Advertising: You have control over the ads you see, and Facebook doesn’t share your information with advertisers. The company’s data policy explains more about how it decides which ads to show you.
- One company: Facebook is part of the same company as WhatsApp and Oculus, and the company explains how it share services, infrastructure, and information. Facebook also make clear that Facebook is the corporate entity that provides the Messenger and Instagram services, which now all use the same data policy. Your experience isn’t changing with any of these products.
- Device information: People have asked to see all the information Facebook collects from the devices they use, and whether the company respects the settings on your mobile device (the short answer: Facebook does). The company also added more specific information about the information it collects when you sync your contacts from some of its products, including <call and SMS history>, which people have recently asked about.
- Addressing harmful behaviour: Facebook better explains how it combats abuse and investigate suspicious activity, including by analyzing the content people share.
For the next seven days, you’ll be able to provide your <feedback> on the terms and data policy. Once finalized, Facebook will publish these documents and ask you to agree to them on Facebook, along with information about the choices you have over your privacy.