Nishtha KanalOct 17, 2013 09:33:26 IST
Various surveys have now proclaimed that teenagers are no longer enticed by the prospect of being on Facebook anymore and that the social networking website has lost its charm for them. This could have possibly be the reason for Facebook’s move today. The social network has announced that it is going to allow teenagers to make their posts more public than ever before now.
Previously, Facebook would only allow users under the age of 17 to make their posts visible to friends or maybe friends of friends in certain cases. Starting today, Facebook will allow these young users to make posts public for the world to see, if they wish to do so.
Now open to teens
Essentially, the same amount of control an adult has over his post, will be made available to teenagers as well. They too will be able to make use of the audience selector that is available when you post a story or an image. They will also be able to choose between making the post available to friends, friends of friends or to the world.
In a blog post making the feature public, Facebook wrote, “Teens are among the savviest people using social media, and whether it comes to civic engagement, activism, or their thoughts on a new movie, they want to be heard.” It added, “While only a small fraction of teens using Facebook might choose to post publicly, this update now gives them the choice to share more broadly, just like on other social media services.”
Facebook has also announced that teenagers will be able to turn on the Follow option on their profile, so users can get their publicly shared updates without having to send them a friend request. The social networking website will still be issuing warnings to teenagers before they post a story, letting them know if the post can be seen by anyone. They can, if needed, change the post’s privacy then. Even so, the default sharing option will still remain set to Friends, so unless the teenager changes the post’s audience, it will remain shared with friends only.
It was about time that Facebook lifts the unnecessary restrictions it had placed on teenagers on the website. While it is understood that Facebook wants to lay emphasis on protecting a teens’ privacy, keeping them cocooned was not going to work. The social network will now have to be extra cautious, though, about helping teens understand how privacy on Facebook works.