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08 May 2010

The Evolution of Privacy on Facebook

The Evolution of Privacy on Facebook is a recently released work by IBM Research scientist Matt McKeon. His analysis provides a series of charts depicting user growth and information sharing on Facebook, at multiple points in time: 2005, 2007, 2009 and early 2010.

Static 2005
Earliest "snapshot" of Facebook user privacy 2005

Matt's article has all six charts in chronological order, as well as a complete explanation of his methodology. He included data collection details. 

The overall message is the dramatic increase in the level of public exposure of Facebook users' private data over time.

Privacy status 2010
Personal data and privacy status as of April 2010
Please note that these charts are part of a work-in-progress and may be updated at any time. They are reproduced here* with specific permission from Matt McKeon but are not Creative Commons licensed and may not be further reproduced except under the limited usage terms on Matt's website.

No privacy on Facebook nor trailer park
This real-life image via fffound is well-suited to the conclusions one may draw after considering  Matt's analytic work.

Ellie K's inquiry about re-use permission in Disqus comments.

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