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Facebook unveils new privacy controls

27 May 2010

It's been a long time coming but Facebook has finally bowed to public pressure and overhauled its privacy model.

In a lengthy blog post, Zuckerberg promised that the goals of the company haven’t changed since it was launched out of a college dorm more than six years ago. “Today we're starting to roll out some changes that will make all of these controls a lot simpler. We've focused on three things: a single control for your content, more powerful controls for your basic information and an easy control to turn off all applications.”

Zuckerberg said that the company has spent a lot of time reviewing user feedback and that the number one thing to come out of that was for people to be able to control their information in a simpler way. “First, we've built one simple control to set who can see the content you post. In a couple of clicks, you can set the content you've posted to be open to everyone, friends of your friends or just your friends,” he explained.

This control will also apply to new products that Facebook launches in the future. If you decide to share your content with friends only, then the site will set future settings to friends only as well. “This single control makes it easier to set who can see all your content at once, but you can still use all of the same granular controls we've offered if you'd like.”

The second function will reduced the amount of basic information that must be visible to everyone. You’ll be given the ability to control who can see your friends and pages.

“Third, we've made it simple to control whether applications and websites can access any of your information,” continued the blog. “Many of you enjoy using applications or playing games, but for those of you who don't we've added an easy way to turn off Platform completely. This will make sure that none of your information is shared with applications or websites.

“Finally and perhaps most importantly, I am pleased to say that with these changes the overhaul of Facebook's privacy model is complete.”

The new controls are being rolled out globally from today but they have yet to be released in New Zealand at time of writing. 

Does that satisfy your concerns about the social networking site? Discuss the changes in the comments section below.

You can also watch Zuckerberg explain the changes in this Facebook video.