Another feature, another settingHow to update your privacy settings for Facebook's new Places feature

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If you're using Facebook from your mobile device, and you're in the U.S., you may have noticed a new feature called Places. It allows you to report your presence at locations such as coffee shops, airports or bars (particularly popular among those who've tried to manage Facebook engagement projects)... much the same way that apps like Gowalla and Foursquare do.

So now's the time to adjust your privacy settings. It's pretty fast and easy to do:

  1. From the main Facebook page, choose the "Account" link in the upper right corner. Then click "Privacy Settings" in the menu that appears.
  2. At the bottom of the section called "Sharing on Facebook", click the "Customize settings" link.
  3. Near the bottom of the "Things I Share" section, find the option for "Places I check in". There's a pulldown menu to the right that lets you choose whether to share with everyone, friends of friends, friends or just specific people. (You can also block specific people.)
If you're at all concerned about your privacy when you check into locations, you'll want to set that to "Friends" - or, even more restrictive, just a few trusted people for now. (As far as I can tell, Facebook doesn't let you select a list of friends for that option; you need to enter them one by one.)


Kristen Stewart Fan says

August 19, 2010 - 3:15pm

Great! But what if you have a Blackberry or Android phone?

Terrence Lockyer says

August 19, 2010 - 6:26pm

One will also need to make a decision about the "Include me in "People here now" after I check in" option.  the default seems to be "Enable", which would show one's presence to "friends" and others near the location.

Mark Nelson says

August 21, 2010 - 1:23am

Very helpful article. Thank you so much!

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