New Facebook settings are causing a stir amongst users. The new facial recognition feature – initially released to users in the United States back in December – was rolled out globally last week. When photos are uploaded, the feature automatically detects friends’ faces in the photos, and then presents the “Tag Suggestions” that should go along with each. This feature is currently the default setting for all users, but can be disabled manually through users’ privacy settings.
In an updated Facebook blog post last week, the company announced that it “launched Tag Suggestions to help people add tags of their friends in photos; something that’s currently done more than 100 million times a day. Tag Suggestions are only made to people when they add new photos to the site, and only friends are suggested. If for any reason someone doesn’t want their name to be suggested, they can disable the feature in their Privacy Settings.” However, in addition to the lack of privacy users feel when their names are automatically paired with uploaded images, there is also criticism that it’s somewhat difficult to change these default settings.
Below, we’ve laid out a step-by-step way to opt out of the new facial recognition feature:
- Go to your account’s Privacy Settings
- Click Customize settings at the bottom of the page
- Scroll down to a list of options called Things others share
- Click a button that says Suggest photos of me to friends
- You then have the option to Disable the facial recognition feature
Whether your kids are using this feature or not, it’s important for them to understand that even if they aren’t tagged in a photo, any images of them that are online can still be accessible and identifiable. Remind them to never put themselves in a position where their reputation can be tarnished or endangered. Everyone is continuously increasing their digital footprint these days, but remind your kids that detagging photos, deleting old wall posts and increasing their privacy settings every so often can help them to better maintain a private, secure and appropriate image both on- and offline.
What do you think of Facebook’s new facial recognition feature? How do you encourage your kids to keep a private and appropriate online image?