Soon, everyone will be searchable on Facebook

A setting that some people could use to prevent people from finding their Timeline will soon be gone

Facebook's reminder it will remove the "Who can look up your Timeline by name' setting
Facebook's reminder it will remove the "Who can look up your Timeline by name' setting

In a matter of weeks, everyone on Facebook will be searchable by name. But you'll still have ways to control who sees your content, as long as you can navigate Facebook's web of privacy controls.

Facebook is pulling the plug on a setting that allowed people to prevent others from finding them by name using the Facebook search bar, the company said on Thursday. The setting was actually removed last year for people who weren't using it, but it was left in place for those who were.

Not any longer. The setting will disappear for all users in the coming weeks, Facebook said. People still using the setting will see a notice on their homepage alerting them that it will soon be going away. Less that 10 percent of Facebook's 1 billion-plus users were still using the setting, according to a Facebook spokeswoman.

Its disappearance means Facebook users will no longer have a way to prevent people from finding their Timeline on the site.

Facebook says it's removing the setting because it's not as useful as it once was. It was created at a time when Facebook was built more around profiles than content, the company said, and it didn't work perfectly anyway. People could still find you by clicking your name in a News Feed story, for instance, or in a mutual friend's Timeline.

So instead of keeping the feature around, Facebook is putting more emphasis on the tools that let people control who can see what they post on the site. "The best way to control what people can find about you is to choose the audience of the individual things you share," Facebook said.

Facebook offers lots of ways to control who can see what content you post on Facebook, though some complain the options are still a bit complicated. Facebook said it would be reminding people who share their posts publicly that those posts can be seen by anyone, including people they may not know.

People can limit the audience for their Timeline posts using the Timeline and Tagging settings, and there are further controls in the Privacy Settings and Tools. Users can also control who sees individual posts at the time they're made.

There's also an Activity Log on each user's Timeline, to let people change the settings for things they've already shared. Still other methods employ good old-fashioned human interaction. "Ask friends and others to remove anything they may have shared about you that you don't want on the site," Facebook said Thursday.

The change to the search control comes as Facebook works to make more content discoverable on its site through Graph Search. It was recently expanded from just profile information to include posts as well.

Graph Search makes it "even more important to control the privacy of the things you share, rather than how people get to your Timeline," Facebook said.

Zach Miners covers social networking, search and general technology news for IDG News Service. Follow Zach on Twitter at @zachminers. Zach's e-mail address is zach_miners@idg.com

Join the newsletter!

Or

Sign up to gain exclusive access to email subscriptions, event invitations, competitions, giveaways, and much more.

Membership is free, and your security and privacy remain protected. View our privacy policy before signing up.

Error: Please check your email address.
Show Comments

Blog Posts

Data has the power to build or burn brands

A brand can be severely wounded by use or misuse of any of its assets and you could say data has the greatest power of all to inflict damage.

Lucy Acheson

Head of data strategy and customer experience, LIDA

Totto and your inorganic future

At Cannes Lions this year we’ve been treated to many artificial intelligence (AI) insights. It’s one of the major discourses of our time.

Richard Brett

CEO, opr

Personas of one and the rise of ‘always there’ marketing

I’ve got some bad news. The ‘always on’ marketing approach that many companies have only just fully implemented is already out of date.

Nigel Roberts

Founding partner and strategy lead, Yell

I read you post full. It's really good .

Yusuf

Salesforce ups the Marketing Cloud ante with Datorama acquisition

Read more

Promotion is difficult. You should be able to do it. Sometimes it turns out bad, and when you turn to professionals, it turns out well - ...

Jordan Samuil

Village Roadshow partners with Lion for pourage rights and promotional partnership

Read more

This is very good news for Australian SMEs as ActiveCampaign is an very powerful marketing automation / email marketing tool that costs a...

Lawrence

SMB marketing automation provider sets up Asia Pac HQ in Sydney

Read more

Completely agree! For the best commercial properties in Mumbai, visit our website - Jagaha!

Gizelle

Salesforce ups the Marketing Cloud ante with Datorama acquisition

Read more

Carisoprodol is used for treatment of pain.so it has some amount of drug use it carefully . Get its complete usage and prescription from ...

jensons henry

CMO profile: The strategy behind Cash Converters brand and customer experience reboot

Read more

Latest Podcast

More podcasts

Sign in