Facebook's Newest Privacy Bypass for Games - The UpStream

Facebook's Newest Privacy Bypass for Games

posted Saturday Jul 14, 2012 by Scott Ertz

Facebook's Newest Privacy Bypass for Games

Anyone who has ever used an app on Facebook knows the personal access screen. The first time you use any app on the platform, you are presented with the "This app needs to access your personal information" screen. Whether it be name, birthdate, friends list or anything else in your profile, it all goes through this single validation screen. While a little annoying sometimes, it is there for a reason: you don't want apps accessing your personal information when you don't expect it.

Don't get too comfortable with this policy, however, as Facebook has made agreements with companies like Zynga and EA, that will allow them to access your personal information without permission, with just the click of a "Play Now" button. The only information available through the instant play feature is your basic information (name, profile picture, birthdate, friends list) and information that you choose to provide as public. If you have made anything, like phone number and physical address, private, it will not be accessible to the app without permission.

I'm not really sure that the annoyance of a single permission dialog the first time you start a new game really warrants a special feature to bypass your personal privacy. When I access an application, I appreciate the platform letting me know what information it wants to know about me. It actually will influence my decision about whether or not to use the app; if the app is requesting information that is seemingly irrelevant to the usage, I might decide not to interact with it.

By allowing me to bypass that decision, I will be much less likely to use any Facebook apps. Hopefully, while giving people who are less interested in the usage of their information the ability to start playing immediately, they will continue to give the rest of us the ability to see what information the app or game wants to know. Are you like me, worried about who has access to your personal information, or are you excited about the ability to play now? Let us know in the comments section.

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