Facebook: No More Hiding From Searches

Bad news, Facebook lurkers: The site won’t let you stay out of search results anymore.

You can run, but you can’t hide from Facebook.

The site is disabling a privacy feature that allowed users the choice of not appearing in its search results, GigaOm says.

(Meanwhile, Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg spent more than $30 million to ensure his own privacy. He bought the four properties surrounding his home, the San Jose Mercury News says. He reportedly wanted to thwart a developer trying to market property as being next to Zuckerberg.)

The option to enable the feature was removed late last year, GigaOm says, but until now people who had turned it on got to stay hidden when users tried to search for them by name. Now, Facebook is pulling back the curtain because it says the privacy feature “isn’t as useful as it was before.” Affected users will receive a notification at the top of the home page screen telling them that the feature has been permanently disabled.

In its announcement, Facebook explained how to use still-existing privacy settings to hide what you post, if not your presence on the site:

To further control what people see across the site:

1. Share each post with the people you want to be able to see it. You control this every time you post.

2. Use Activity Log to review individual things you’ve already shared. Here you can delete things you may not want to appear on Facebook anymore, untag photos and change the privacy of past posts.

3. Ask friends and others to remove anything they may have shared about you that you don’t want on the site. You can do this by reaching out to the person directly, or using the reporting feature, also available in Activity Log.

To get to Activity Log and other privacy tools, click [the lock icon] at the top of every page to use your privacy shortcuts.

You can read more about managing your privacy settings in our story, “Protect Your Privacy From Facebook’s New Feature.”

Stacy Johnson

It's not the usual blah, blah, blah

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  • Chuck

    Come on!!!!!
    We existed for eons without making Zuckass rich, and now you can’t do without it?
    You allow this money grubbing SOB to victimize you by allowing everyone in the alphabet soup pot to have your information?
    Grow some balls , Americans!
    Tell uckass to stick his Facebook where the sun doesn’t shine.

  • Bob Lee

    We know for sure that privacy has no meaning since a long time. No one can pretend to be anonymous today. it’s a fact. So a little more or a little less from Facebook don’t change nothing.

  • Elizabeth Bennett

    I resisted joining Facebook for the first 4-5 years. I was too busy hiking, riding my motorcycle, kayaking, dating, fixing up my house I just bought, learning Russian. I didn’t get the people who wanted to post pictures of their breakfast online nor the people who spent time looking at it. You made your bacon smile? Really? Let me take away 15 minutes from my family to “Like” that! Really people?! This is really the best thing you can find to do with you time? Sad.
    I finally gave in to the endless requests from friends in my in-box and signed up. I’ve regreted it ever since. The crap that people post on Facebook astounds me. I was hoping it would be a place for me to socialize with my family and friends. I was hoping to catch up with friends from long ago. I have lost hours of my life that I’ll never get back because of Facebook. Hours I could have used hiking, riding my motorcycle, kayaking, dating, fixing up my house, learning to cook, reading a good book, making out with my lover, playing the piano, learning how to sell on e-bay. I could literally go on for an hour with this. You get the point. I have made a choice to walk away from Facebook. When I want to get in touch with an old friend, sure, I can look them up using Facebook maybe … but I refuse to encourage the people who are obviously on there every frickin’ day of their lives, it looks like all day, doing nothing but posting CRAP. GET A LIFE!!
    I’m going to make a bumper-sticker / start a movement: GET OFF OF FACEBOOK! YOUR LIFE IS CALLING!

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