MySpace simplifying privacy settings

Ronny Kerr · May 17, 2010 · Short URL:

In response to criticisms against Facebook for not protecting user data, MySpace updates privacy

privacyMySpace announced today a new approach to privacy, which will manifest itself through new, simplified settings and options, ultimately seeking to make the user comfortable with sharing their data, like the user's name, birthday, interests and photos.

In the coming weeks, MySpace's privacy settings will be simplified to give users more control over just about everything with one click. MySpace wants its users to know that, after all, they must decide who can see the information they share on the social network.

"While MySpace at its core is about discovery, self expression and sharing, we understand people might want the option of limiting the sharing of their information to a select group of friends," explains Mike Jones, Co-President of Myspace. "We exist as a platform for our users and, as such, maintain the interests of our users as a main priority in our business and product decisions. We respect our users’ desires to balance sharing and privacy, and never push our users to an uncomfortable privacy position."

In what appears to be a clear jab at Facebook for continually making user data available to everyone by default, Jones says that MySpace will by default have all accounts set to share with "friends only," something that privacy advocates have often demanded that Facebook do. The other options will include "public," which means anyone on the Web can see your content, or "public to anyone 18 or over."

Facebook is still facing controversy over new technologies it unveiled last month. One update in particular has the network "pre-approving" certain third-party sites to automatically have access to a user's data without any input from the user. In general, privacy advocates believe that social networks should always ask the user whether their data can be shared.

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