by Geoff Gillette
Social media privacy is getting to be one of the main concerns raised by users. Either the social platform is hacked, third party apps screw up or (as is often the case) the company providing the social platform makes a change that creates a security issue.
Such has been the case with Facebook, who has come under fire for the practice of changing how posts are seen and who can see them.
In answer to these complaints, Facebook recently released Facebook Privacy Basics, a primer of sorts designed to enlighten the masses on how to lock down their privacy.
Privacy settings? Bring ‘em on, right?
Going to the Facebook Privacy Basics page, users are immediately given the option of choosing between What others see, How others interact with you, and What you see. Drilling down this gives you several different options to choose from in determining the issue that you may be having or the question you may have.
Once inside the menus and a choice is made, that’s where things tend to slow down a bit. Inside each subject matter area, users are then presented with a powerpoint slide show walking them through the ins and outs of that particular subject. And in many cases, the slide will provide a bit of interactivity as well, in that you will need to actually “try” the settings they are demonstrating. In some of the demos, the slide show will not advance if you haven’t clicked on the “try it” button, which (if you are an active user and just looking for some tips you may not have heard before) can be a bit on the frustrating side.
In a clever bit of crowdsourcing the information dispersal, the end of each slide show has a “Share What You Learned” slide, which gives the users the opportunity to share it to their Facebook page, e-mail it to a friend or create a link to the subject.
Overall, the Facebook Privacy Basics page is a great addition to Facebook’s outreach efforts. The pages are nice looking, the colors are soothing and the information is concise and has plenty of infographics to back up the instructions.
My only complaint (and it is a small one) is that the slide show format, coupled with the “try it” buttons (and no search function), creates an experience where someone who may not really know what they’re looking for could become lost within a morass of slides with no escape (no “back to the homepage” button anywhere on the page).
In addition, the elementary style of the graphics coupled with the aforementioned points leads to the impression that the page is designed for either the very young or very old demographic. I don’t think it’s possible for a page to be condescending, but if it were, this one would definitely be talking down its nose to us.
Do you need a refresher course on Facebook Privacy? Will you be checking out the new page?