TIME technology

Facebook Is Tweaking Its Privacy Settings. Again

Mark Zuckerberg arrives for a keynote session on the opening day of the Mobile World Congress in Barcelona, Feb. 24, 2014.
Mark Zuckerberg arrives for a keynote session on the opening day of the Mobile World Congress in Barcelona, Feb. 24, 2014. Simon Dawson—Bloomberg/Getty Images

Just weeks after rolling out a redesigned News Feed, Facebook is making more changes to its service by making its privacy settings easier to understand. On Tuesday the company announced a number of tweaks to its interface meant to make it easier for users to manage who sees their posts.

The social network will offer more detailed explanations for who can see posts that are shared with the “Public” or with “Friends.” Old Timeline cover photos, which have all been public by default in the past, can soon be made private. Users who are posting a lot of content publicly will be warned by a new blue dinosaur that they should review their privacy settings. The company will also make it clearer that when a user shares another user’s posts, only people mutual friends see that content.

Facebook has angered people in the past by quietly changing their privacy options, but these new changes will actually provide users more control. The company said it runs 4,000 privacy surveys per day to understand users’ privacy concerns. Increasingly, people are seeking to communicate online in less public ways, either through messaging apps like WhatsApp and Snapchat or anonymous networks such as Secret and Whisper. Boosting privacy options could help Facebook retain some of this activity.

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