As Facebook grows to integrate with more and more consumer and search sites, they are probably realizing their users are getting confused about what this means, and how these sites know what restaurant their ex-neighbor recently visited.
In an effort to clear the air on what Instant Personalization means, and as a way of making their users feel in control despite the lack of an opt-in policy within Facebook as we’ve suggested in the past, Facebook launched a page to explain what instant personalization is around the web and how you can control what others see.
On the site since September, they wrote:
“How it works: Partners adhere to Facebook’s guidelines and may only use your public information to serve you a personalized experience. Public information includes your name, profile picture, gender, networks, and other information shared with everyone.
When you first arrive on a participating site, you will see a notification and a way to turn off the customized experience in one click. Your information can only be used to present you with a more personalized experience and cannot be transferred to advertisers or used for any other purposes.”
Facebook is addressing some concerns users have that they are sharing private data with third-party websites without permission. What actually happens is only publically available information and data is shared with outside sites.
Now, when you check out your privacy settings within Applications and Websites, a window pops up with that same Facebook informational video displayed on their new page explaining to users how their experience is being personalized on the web. You are forced to watch or close the video before you can change your settings.
All you need to do to turn off Instant Personalization on all Facebook’s partner sites is uncheck the box within the Instant Personalization tab in the Applications and Websites privacy settings. Also, you can opt-out of third-party websites (and search engines) which are now all supposed to give you the option like Pandora trail blazed earlier this spring.
Do Facebook’s new efforts to explain Instant Personalization make you more comfortable sharing your social information on third-party sites?