People of Facebook continue to act cautiously when their ability to connect with high school classmates and share the latest kitten video is threatened.
Of course, it's always important to protect your online privacy... but when warnings about that privacy turn out to be hoaxes, users are worrying for no reason.
One of the most common hoaxes about Facebook is making the rounds, once again, on the social media site. One wordy version reads:
"Due to the fact that Facebook has chosen to involve software that will allow the theft of my personal information, I state: at this date of September 26, 2015, in response to the new guidelines of Facebook, pursuant to articles L.111, 112 and 113 of the code of intellectual property, I declare that my rights are attached to all my personal data drawings, paintings, photos, video, texts etc. published on my profile and my page. For commercial use of the foregoing my written consent is required at all times. Those who read this text can do a copy/paste on their Facebook wall. This will allow them to place themselves under the protection of copyright. By this statement, I tell Facebook that it is strictly forbidden to disclose, copy, distribute, broadcast, or take any other action against me on the basis of this profile and or its content. The actions mentioned above also apply to employees, students, agents and or other personnel under the direction of Facebook. The content of my profile contains private information. The violation of my privacy is punishable by law (UCC 1-308 1-308 1-103 and the Rome Statute). Facebook is now an open capital entity. All members are invited to publish a notice of this kind, or if they prefer, you can copy and paste this version."
Quite the mouthful for a faulty warning. And the proof against it is on Facebook itself, filed under Common Myths About Facebook.
The question reads: "Does Facebook sell my information?"
Facebook answers: "No, we don't sell any of your information to anyone and we never will. You have control over how your information is shared. To learn more about the controls you have, visit Facebook Privacy Basics."
Facebook Fees: Another Frequent Hoax
This privacy "warning" isn't the only one to pop up from time to time. Another common myth alerts users to the "threat" of impending fees to use Facebook, citing "the media" as its source of confirmation.
A common message states:
"Now it's official! It is published in the media. Facebook has just released the entry price: € 5,99 to keep the subscription gold of your status of life 'private'. If you paste this message on your page, it will be offered free (I said paste not share) if not tomorrow, all your posts can become public. Even the messages that have been deleted or the photos not allowed. After all, it does not cost anything for a simple copy and paste."
Now it's official! ...Except, no, it's not. This claim, too, has been debunked by Facebook itself.
"While there may be water on Mars, don't believe everything you read on the internet today. Facebook is free and it always will be. And the thing about copying and pasting a legal notice is just a hoax. Stay safe out there Earthlings!" Facebook posted earlier Tuesday.
Those who copy and paste the warnings may not realize that the same message was circulating last January, as well as in 2012, with the first fake warning dating back to at least 2009.
But it's not true. Facebook's homepage assures visitors that the social networking site is "free and always will be."
Anyone who still has doubts about the legitimacy of these warnings should just read Facebook's Statement of Rights and Responsibilities.
"You own all of the content and information you post on Facebook, and you can control how it is shared through your privacy and application settings," Facebook states.
Rest assured, Facebook is still free and says it holds users' privacy in high regard. Nonetheless, you might want to save this article for when these common hoaxes make their rounds again in a few months.