Zuckerberg on privacy: We missed the mark

24 May 2010

In an open letter published as a column in the Washington Post today, Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg addressed the recent concerns surrounding user data and privacy settings, saying Facebook has intended to give “lots of granular controls” but instead “just missed the mark”.

“Sometimes we move too fast – and after listening to recent concerns, we’re responding,” said Zuckerberg, referring to the fact the social-networking site will now be changing privacy controls to make it easier for users as well as making it clearer on how to easily switch off third-party services.

In a letter to US blogger Robert Scoble, Zuckerberg admitted Facebook “made a bunch of mistakes”, adding that he hopes “at the end of this is that the service ends up in a better place and that people understand that our intentions are in the right place and we respond to the feedback from the people we serve”.

“We will keep building, we will keep listening and we will continue to have a dialogue with everyone who cares enough about Facebook to share their ideas,” he said in the Washington Post column.

“And we will keep focused on achieving our mission of giving people the power to share and making the world more open and connected,” he added.

Amongst critics of Facebook’s evolving privacy settings is Wired staff writer Ryan Singel, who said that while Facebook defends its changing default settings to make the internet more personal for users the problem is that Facebook itself owns all of this data, so we have to simply trust it keeps it safe.

By Marie Boran

Photo: Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg