Facebook shares posts whether you share them or not

Facebook is your personal life, and not your professional persona, right? Not even slightly. As businesses develop and evolve the distinctions between what you do on Facebook as an individual, and what you do as a professional in industry are becoming increasingly blurred. This applies to all social networks. If you share it, you'd better be prepared for someone from your workplace to be able to see it.

People say you should never discuss politics or religion with friends if you want to remain friends. The same applies in the world of business. Never, ever mention your political beliefs or if you believe in a celestial teapot. It's just bad practice since you have no idea who will get wind of it. Your customers, your co-workers, or your boss might hear it. They might all hear it, and that's especially bad for you. Facebook publishes posts under your name, and as often as not puts them right at the top of your friends' News Feed.

Sharing is all well and good, but people often don't realise what they are sharing. If you choose to share something via a status update then you expect it to be available to your friends. That's the idea behind it, but now posts can be sent because you liked a page in the past. Your likes are visible to your Facebook friends, and they too can understand your adoration of 'Offensive Jokes' or whatever else you might have selected. This has to be a bug or a problem, surely? According to Facebook, it isn't. A spokesperson had this to say:

To help people find new Pages, events, and other interesting information, people may now see posts from a Page a friend likes. These posts will include the social context from your friends who like the Page and will respect all existing settings.

It would be alright if you could unsubscribe yourself from these posts. You can't, short of deleting the person as a friend. You could block the individual post but the page can still share things which will appear on your timeline. If you have friends from America you can expect the problem to worsen as opinions creep into posts, encouraging voting for whomever, irrespective of your friend's stance. If you have liked a large number of pages the simplest thing you could do is unlike anything and everything which could cause you embarrassment. all of it. You don't get an alert when 'you' posted something, so you simply have to keep your likes locked down.

Facebook is no stranger to slapping your name and face onto their different schemes. You may remember their Sponsored Stories, which could leave you in an embarrassing position if your face appeared beside a story. It happened too, with some people being used to advertise Viagra and other 'services' they might object to. Privacy is paramount if you're in business, so if you have co-workers or associates on Facebook you might prefer to unlike every page and avoid any sharing without permission. It's a controversial move and will probably have someone quickly writing up a lawsuit in the near future. Expect to hear about that if it happens, since the plaintiff will probably be looking for an exorbitant sum of money.

The obvious solution to any problems that could arise would be to use your better judgment. You might like something but you don't have to make it obvious on Facebook. It is the simplest solution to something which stops being a problem this way. If you don't mind taking the risk of one of these unwarranted posts, then you have nothing to worry about.

Source: ZDNet
Shrugging girl image by Shutterstock
 

Report a problem with article
Previous Story

Digg gets acquired for a whopping $500,000 [Update]

Next Story

Steam Summer Sale has started

33 Comments

Commenting is disabled on this article.

Despite the fact this post is about Facebook and yes its appalling lack of privacy. Something caught my eye in that post and I'm not sure if anyone else has already picked up on it but why SHOULD are friends and co-workers be dependent on following prevailing social convention re not discussing religion or politics its why the world is the way it is in terms of never getting things sorted and just complaining about politicians because social convention tells us to not talk about the important issues. Sad, PS no offence to the writer but can Neowin in general make itself more politically neutral in news reporting “Never, ever mention your political beliefs or if you believe in a celestial teapot.” Should really be Never, ever mention your political beliefs or if you believe in a celestial teapot or are, a Christian, a Buddhist an agnostic etc.”, as an atheist I am someone dismayed at the example of atheism being singled out there I am assuming the author is American given the treatment of atheists in America but I would have expected to see a number of examples in that context it should be no better or worse to say you're an Atheist than a Christian, a Muslim, a Jew, an agnostic etc. etc. Ok getting off my soap box.

Wow, this article is worded in such a way to encourage the ridiculous overreacting about privacy that you see from a lot of people. All that's happened is that now, instead of "xxxxxx likes yyyyyyy", we now have "xxxxxxx likes yyyyyyy, and here are some posts from yyyyyyy". It's just a simple design change! You still have complete control over what is shared! The conspiracy nuts need to calm down.

This is how Neowin makes a living, writing over-the-top ridiculous stories that draw up controversy (which bring in hits and comments) by writing false or misleading information in their stories

Meph said,
The like button needs to die. I could be here all day giving reasons why, but this is one of them.

Why do you believe that? If you don't like the Sponsored Stories feature, don't Facebook Like anything. But it's best not to want a feature many of us love to die, when all you have to do is not use the feature.

Having said that, it seems silly that people will have a problem with Sponsored Stories if they actually like the product/brand they're Facebook Liking. Remember, this recent update (mentioned in the article) does not share a Page's post and attempt to imply the user has shared it; it is laid out in a way which clearly mentions that the user has liked the Page and the post that accompanies the story is just a recent post from that Page.

Calum said,

Why do you believe that? If you don't like the Sponsored Stories feature, don't Facebook Like anything. But it's best not to want a feature many of us love to die, when all you have to do is not use the feature.

Having said that, it seems silly that people will have a problem with Sponsored Stories if they actually like the product/brand they're Facebook Liking. Remember, this recent update (mentioned in the article) does not share a Page's post and attempt to imply the user has shared it; it is laid out in a way which clearly mentions that the user has liked the Page and the post that accompanies the story is just a recent post from that Page.


The main reason why I say this is because they slow down page loading times and they can be used to track websites you go to even if you don't click on them, and even if you don't have a Facebook account!

The article

Facebook is no stranger to slapping your name and face onto their different schemes. You may remember their Sponsored Stories, which could leave you in an embarrassing position if your face appeared beside a story. It happened too, with some people being used to advertise Viagra and other 'services' they might object to.

I'd like to see proof of the story about viagra before I believe that. Facebook only inform friends of Pages one has liked (if those likes are visible to the friend), in both this Sponsored Stories feature and in the previous one. So if someone has liked a Page about viagra, that may be used in the Sponsored Story; if they haven't, it won't be. There is absolutely nothing wrong with that because the person has endorsed it by liking the Page and allowed their friends to see it by making those likes visible to their friends; all Facebook are doing is making that like more visible than others, but it is still visible to those friends if any of them visit the user's Timeline.

OMG the government are going to use radar scanners to see everything that we are doing, but I will post my entire life on Facebook for everyone to see and I'm happy with that.

People either don't care or they want people to know everything they are doing otherwise facebook would not be as big as it is today. Personally I just don't understand it

Have to laugh when people say they are going to stop using facebook!.. the answer is simple... dont post stuff you dont want everyone to know!

aviator189 said,
I am this close to shutting my facebook account down.

Why?

This isn't true. Facebook are not sharing any posts one hasn't shared. This is the new type of Sponsored Story that appears in people's News Feeds to say one has liked a Page. A post from the Page accompanies the story, but that post is underneath clear text that states "Calum likes Coca-Cola" and "Recent post." The entire story is laid out in a way which is clear that the person hasn't shared or liked the post; the story is clear in merely stating they've liked the page.

Facebook will only tell your friends which pages you've liked when you've made those likes visible to your friends, so your friends can see them anyway when they visit your profile. So why do you feel this is a problem?

MrXXIV said,
I'm actually taking advantage of the features. I could care less. You should too!

couldn't care less

Emon said,

couldn't care less

No, could care less, for me. As in, I care, but I'll care less as long as I'm the one who's doing it and not going through it.

Huh? I don't get the big deal? Whether you like a post or add a comment to a friend's post it shares that comment to all of your friends depending on your privacy settings and their's. It has done that since day 1. Is this supposed to be something new that I'm missing here?

For example, if I'm not friends with Belinda. My friend is best friend with hers and likes her comment. I will see it show up in my news feed IF Belinda is set to share to friends of friends. And, if her privacy settings are set to friends of friends, I can usually go to her profile and see all of her pics and comments too! OMG, so horrible!

This is a social site, the whole point is to share your activity with people. It is a shared online journal/diary. You can control how visible it actually is. Facebook was bad about that for awhile, but they have gotten better with the new timeline in getting people more aware of it. It's still your own responsibility to check and make sure though.

Now if you look at my settings, my privacy is set to Friends only and exclude co-workers and any other friends set to the Restricted list. My likes only become visible to my friends only, and my co-workers cannot see them. Friends of Friends can't see it either.


"Facebook is no stranger to slapping your name and face onto their different schemes. You may remember their Sponsored Stories, which could leave you in an embarrassing position if your face appeared beside a story. It happened too, with some people being used to advertise Viagra and other 'services' they might object to. "

Could someone enlighten me as to what other service is allowed to do this? Imagine if it was in the newspaper, a magazine, busstop ad, or on TV... But its perfectly fine on facebook.
Irony is, most people don't realize facebook owns EVERYTHING you share with it and can use it how it wants to whenever it wants to. Throw your slutty party pics on a new dildo ad? no problem... They own the rights to those images you uploaded. TOS are great eh?

srbeen said,
"Facebook is no stranger to slapping your name and face onto their different schemes. You may remember their Sponsored Stories, which could leave you in an embarrassing position if your face appeared beside a story. It happened too, with some people being used to advertise Viagra and other 'services' they might object to. "

Could someone enlighten me as to what other service is allowed to do this? Imagine if it was in the newspaper, a magazine, busstop ad, or on TV... But its perfectly fine on facebook.
Irony is, most people don't realize facebook owns EVERYTHING you share with it and can use it how it wants to whenever it wants to. Throw your slutty party pics on a new dildo ad? no problem... They own the rights to those images you uploaded. TOS are great eh?


But there is nothing wrong or sly about what Facebook are doing. They are not sharing any posts one hasn't shared and attempting to pass that off as a share from that user. All they are doing in this update (and in the original Sponsored Stories feature) is informing your friends of the Pages you've liked (regarding likes you've made visible to them). Your friends could see your likes anyway, if they looked at your profile. Why do you feel Sponsored Stories is wrong, considering that?

As much as I use Facebook on a daily basis, I'm wondering if they're begging people to run away from the site after whatever funky decision they make every second week.

Denis W said,
As much as I use Facebook on a daily basis, I'm wondering if they're begging people to run away from the site after whatever funky decision they make every second week.

But this isn't true. Facebook are not sharing any post one hasn't shared and attempting to imply the user has shared it (which is what this article implies). This is the new type of Sponsored Story that appears in people's News Feeds to say one has liked a Page. A post from the Page accompanies the story, but that post is underneath clear text that states "Calum likes Coca-Cola" and "Recent post." The entire story is laid out in a way which is clear that the person hasn't shared or liked the post; the story is clear in merely stating they've liked the page.

Edited by Calum, Jul 13 2012, 9:11am :

Rappy said,
I always thought the likes appeared anyway? clearly not!

I'm not quite sure what you mean, but nothing bad is happening here. Facebook are not sharing any posts one hasn't shared. This is the new type of Sponsored Story that appears in people's News Feeds to say one has liked a Page. A post from the Page accompanies the story, but that post is underneath clear text that states "Calum likes Coca-Cola" and "Recent post." The entire story is laid out in a way which is clear that the person hasn't shared or liked the post; the story is clear in merely stating they've liked the page.

Raa said,
What sort of nonsense is this? I can see an outcry coming from this stupid decision!
People don't care, or they may at first, for a few days maybe, then they forget, and they don't care. We live in a world full of ignorant people.

zikalify said,
People don't care, or they may at first, for a few days maybe, then they forget, and they don't care. We live in a world full of ignorant people.

And short attention spans!

Raa said,
What sort of nonsense is this? I can see an outcry coming from this stupid decision!

It isn't true. They are not sharing any posts one hasn't shared. This is the new type of Sponsored Story that appears in people's News Feeds to say one has liked a Page. A post from the Page accompanies the story, but that post is underneath clear text that states "Calum likes Coca-Cola" and "Recent post." The entire story is laid out in a way which is clear that the person hasn't shared or liked the post; the story is clear in merely stating they've liked the page.

Yet another reason I do not have a Facebook account. Also anyone who thinks that anything they do online (read Facebook, etc) remains private, they are either naive, or sadly mistaken.