How Private Are You?
Almost everyone has a Facebook account. If you don’t, then more than likely you know someone who does. It’s everywhere and the momentum does seem to be slowing. Posting your current status when leaving the office or choosing a new profile picture to share with all of your friends, family and whoever else you’ve be-friended is normal practice for a Facebooker.
So let’s ask a really obvious question. When you delete that embarrassing picture of the drunken table dance you did the weekend prior it’s gone forever, right?
Unfortunately, the answer is No. When you upload the cute pictures of the new cocker spaniel to Facebook the photo is sent to a server where the data is stored and retrieved when someone, you or anyone else, goes to view it.
As the normal PC user knows when something is sent to the recycle bin on your desktop it’s “gone” but not really “gone.” It’s basically moved from one place to the other and if needed can still be retrieved.
Think of “deleting” something from your Facebook page similar to the recycle bin example. Let’s look at Facebook’s Statement of Rights and Responsibilities, the governing document for the popular site, “when you delete IP [your intellectual property, including pictures and videos] content, it is deleted in a manner similar to emptying the recycle bin on a computer. However, you understand that removed content may persist in backup copies for a reasonable period of time (but will not be available to others).”
Basically, what Facebook is saying is that although you’ve deleted it it’s still lurking out there somewhere, maybe in multiple places and will be there until they get around to taking care of it. Nice huh?
Let’s move on to the next logical questions here; can someone still access the photo/video? How’s that possible? How would they get to it if it’s not visible on my page anymore?
Yes, someone can still access the photo or video you’ve already deleted even though it’s no longer visible on your Facebook page. All they need to have is the URL address of when they originally viewed it online. Not to mention the minute you uploaded that favorite video you’ve signed away all rights to allow Facebook or their affiliates to use it.
So, remember…keeping connected to old friends and family is a wonderful thing but what you put on the web stays on the web no matter how many times you think you’ve deleted it.