Meta agrees to update policy on sharing publicly available residential addresses on Facebook and Instagram
While Facebook and Instagram have rules that prevent users from sharing someone’s residential address, an exception in their policy has allowed users to share publicly available residential addresses on both platforms so far. However, Meta (previously Facebook) has now announced that it will no longer let users share publicly available residential addresses on Facebook or Instagram, following a recommendation from the Oversight Board.
According to a recent update on Meta’s Transparency Center (via Engadget), Meta is removing the exception that permitted users to share publicly available residential addresses on Facebook and Instagram. The change comes almost a year after the company asked the Oversight Board for guidance on its handling of private residential information. In response, the Oversight Board had shared 17 recommendations earlier this year in February. Meta is now taking action based on these recommendations and has agreed to remove the exception from its policy.
“As the board notes in this recommendation, removing the exception for ‘publicly available’ residential information may limit the availability of this information on Facebook and Instagram when it is still publicly available elsewhere. However, we recognize that implementing this recommendation can strengthen privacy protections on our platforms,” Meta wrote. The company plans to implement the policy change by the end of the year.
In addition, Meta has also agreed to relax its policy on another issue, which will let users share photos of the exterior of private homes “when the property depicted is the focus of the news story, except when shared in the context of organizing protests against the resident.” Furthermore, the company will also allow users to share addresses of “high-ranking” government officials if the property is a publicly-owned official residence.
These policy changes could help ease the doxxing issues on Meta’s social media platforms while still letting users share residential addresses in certain scenarios. For more information, check out Meta’s official response by following the source link below.