Facebook faces criticism as privacy policy voting sees low turnout

Published Date
14 - Jun - 2012
| Last Updated
14 - Jun - 2012
 
Facebook faces criticism as privacy policy voting sees low turnou...

With more than 900 million subscribers across the globe, Facebook is one of the largest Social Networking sites on the web. The Wall Street Journal in its recent report said if the social networking website was a country, it would have been the third largest most populated nation, after China and India. But then, it is just a virtual social network, where people come to communicate, make friends and have some entertainment.

Facebook recently conducted a poll on its site over which Facebook policies should be put into place on the social network. The poll saw a serious lack of user interest. Out of 900 million users, only 342,632 voted on which privacy policy should the site adopt. That's about 1 in every 2,600 users, or just 0.038 percent of the total Facebook user strength. Around 297,883 people -- approximately 87 percent of all respondents -- chose to keep Facebook’s existing SRR and Data Use Policy.

Mashable in its report shed light on why there was such a low turnout. The report contemplated that users might not have seen the link to vote on their Facebook pages, as it was placed on the left side tool bar next to their news feeds.

Casey Johnston of ArsTechnica in his report slammed Facebook, saying its efforts were “token” at best in the way in alerting users, as compared to Google, which placed a link to new privacy policy under the search box on its home page for users across the globe days before the policy came into effect. Johnston further said that sites can lead users to the privacy policy but cannot force users to read the privacy policy, but in case of Facebook it wasn't even leading.

Facebook was apparently not pleased with low turnout followed by harsh criticism. "Despite our substantial outreach effort, the number of people who voted constituted such a small and unrepresentative percentage of our user community," said Elliot Schrage, Facebook's vice president of communications, public policy and marketing, in a lengthy posting on the social network about the results of the vote.

Do you also think Facebook didn't do enough to notify people? Or the low turnout was a normal cold response from users to Facebook?

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