Facebook Changes Default Privacy Settings for Users 13 – 17 So What?

facebook

Facebook Changes Default Privacy Settings

With all the cyber bullying we’ve been hearing about on the news – we have to wonder if this change is coming along a bit too late?  Or, is it a band-aid to patch a broken limb?  Facebook announced today teen accounts (ages 13 – 17) will default to the “friends” setting; the previous default was “friends of friends”.  Going forward they will be able to make changes back to “friends of friends” or “public”  but will be notified of the status of the post setting, reminding the teens the post is indeed public and will be seen by more than just their friends.

Facebook

 

If they choose to share the post publicly – they will see the post again.  O.K. – so Facebook becomes a nagging parent.  Do you think it will deter the teen from posting publicly or do you think it will entice the teen to get creative with their account?  Perhaps change their age?  Facebook does allow you to change your age (albeit a limited number of times).  I know if I were a rebellious teen – what I would do.

Will changing the default privacy settings on Facebook help protect teens from child trafficking? Pedophiles? Rapists? More importantly, other teens? Probably not.  Facebook even admits:

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. So, starting today, people aged 13 through 17 will also have the choice to post publicly on Facebook. 

As a parent, I have concerns and have to wonder why a 13 year old should even have a Facebook profile.  It was just yesterday (October 15) a 12 year old girl killed herself  because her ex-best friend (a 14 year old girl) and another 12 year old girl were arrested for cyber bullying.  How is Facebook’s change to the default privacy setting going to affect instances like this?

What do you think about Facebook’s changes to their default privacy settings for users 13 – 17?  Is it enough? I would love your opinion.