Facebook Deleting Photos: If You Don’t Download Another App, It May Happen To You

Is Facebook deleting photos, you ask? That’s what people who have synced photos from their phones to their Facebook accounts will soon find. Facebook will delete these photos after July 7 in an effort to get more people to use the company’s Moments app.

Facebook first introduced Moments about a year ago as a way to let friends sync their photos from specific times/places. For example, a bunch of people who attended the same party could sync their photos with one another. As Facebook described it, it’s a quick way to share photos with friends who are in them and get photos that you’re in back. So what does this have to do with Facebook deleting photos?

Evidently, Moments hasn’t been quite as popular as Facebook would like it to be. According to TechCrunch, the company is forcing the app to the top of the App Store as it warns people that it will be deleting their photos if they don’t install it. That’s certainly one way to boost popularity.

To be clear, Facebook isn’t deleting all your photos if you don’t install Moments. This is specifically for those syncing the photos from their phones. Some have been doing this without even realizing it. The photos you’ve simply shared to Facebook are safe.

Facebook has been sending users emails about deleting photos. At the link above, TechCrunch points to a tweet, which shows an example of a message one user received. It says the following.

“We wanted to let you know that photos you privately synced from your phone to Facebook will be deleted soon. Earlier this year, they were moved to Moments, a new app from Facebook.

“If you want to keep you 12,348 photos download Moments and log in before July 7. If you don’t want Moments, you can also download these photos directly to your computer from your Facebook profile. Otherwise, they’ll be deleted. This won’t affect photos or videos you shared on Facebook.

“Moments lets you organize your privately share[d] photos with friends It’s free on iOS and Android.”

According to Engadget, Facebook gave users the ability to auto-sync their photos from their phones with a private album in the Facebook app back in 2012. This was three years before Moments was introduced.

If you’re unfamiliar with Moments, it keeps all of your synced photos organized and lets you search them to find yourself or specific friends. It uses facial recognition technology to group photos based on friends who are in them. In fact, it’s the same technology that powers Facebook’s tag suggestion feature.

Moments was one of the apps Facebook launched through its Creative Labs arm. This was shut down back in December, along with most of the apps it spawned, including: Slingshot, Rooms, and Riff. Moments was clearly popular enough to survive the death sentence those received. Facebook deleting photos just seems to be a ploy to push it further into popularity.

In other Facebook news, there’s a new website that scrapes your private Facebook account (and other social media accounts) and gives information to potential employers and landlords to help them determine whether or not you would be an ideal employee or tenant. According to CNET, the site, called Score Assured, takes a “deep dive” into a person’s social-media activity and analyzes the words the person uses to provide its information to employers and landlords.

As far as the story at hand, if you don’t want Facebook deleting photos, it appears your best option is to download Moments. I’m not sure how important or valuable having your phone’s synced to Facebook is anyway, but just know that if you don’t, you’re going to find your photos missing from the social network’s app.

[Photo by Sean Gallup/Getty Images]