How to Stop Facebook’s 'Frictionless' Sharing
by Leslie Meredith, TechNewsDaily Senior Writer
November 21 2011 02:47 PM ET
Facebook launched what it calls 'frictionless' sharing that automatically posts content that users read, listen to or watch to its real-time newsfeed -- the ticker -- that has some Facebookers more than a little uncomfortable. You may not want the world to know you are a closet Barry Manilow fan. Setting privacy controls is the solution.
Back in September at Facebook's f8 developer event, founder Mark Zuckerberg introduced the idea of frictionless sharing. In the old days, users had to click 'Share' or were asked if they wanted to post something to their walls. With the new "frictionless sharing," users don't need to do anything. Internet radio service Spotify ; The Washington Post, with its Social Reader; Hulu and Netflix were among the headliners for the new Facebook feature. Enable an app, and a record of the media you've consumed is added to your profile and pushed to your friends via the new ticker.
Backlash was quick and strong. Spotify, with 8,300,00 monthly active users on Facebook, has been the first to respond to criticism, by adding a private listening mode.
"Many of our users have told us that they like to share what they're listening to, but also want an easy way to hide their occasional guilty pleasures. So we've now added a new 'Private Listening' mode to our latest update," a Spotify spokesperson told TechNewsDaily. To access the new mode, users launch Spotify, click on their names in the upper-righthand window and select 'Private Listening.'
Other Facebook frictionless apps do not offer a private mode — they're all or nothing when it comes to sharing. Soon, more than 60 frictionless media apps will be available on Facebook, according to a company statement. If users don't want to share their activity with their friends, the only alternative is to disable apps. Users can easily counter apps that they feel reveal too much information by accessing "Privacy Settings." Choosing "Apps & Websites," then "Apps you use" will bring up a list of apps currently activated. Users can delete apps altogether by clicking on them, or they can modify who can see data generated by the app. Like any Facebook item, users can choose "Custom" to tailor which people to include or exclude.