Facebook’s creepy news feed insertions are a privacy annoyance but a usability nightmare
I’ve been really annoyed lately at Facebook’s algorithm showing my comments on statuses and photos to friends of mine who aren’t friends with the original posters. I’m not entirely sure how to turn it off, but it seems that in the “Timeline and Tagging” section of the privacy settings, and change “Who can see what others post on your timeline?” to just be “Friends”. I also notice in the “Custom” section of that dropdown, there’s a checkbox for “Friends of those tagged” under “Make this visible to”. Which is all not just confusing, but unclear about what it actually does.
But we’ve had this conversation before, right? The problem with Facebook’s privacy is not even necessarily what they show, but that it’s never clear what they’re going to show to others and when. If I select the huge “Friends” button on the default privacy settings, I expect it’s only the people I’m friends with who are going to see it, not that it’s mostly friends who see it but sometimes other people might see it, depending on what it is and who’s tagged in it.
I actually don’t have much of a problem with a lot of my life being public. But I just want to know what’s going out and when and to who. I know that Facebook (and Google) thrive on people keeping public lives on the internet, but they need to do what Twitter does and keep it clear. Give us a good reason to share to more than just our friends, but don’t trick us into doing it.