Facebook Privacy Notice Doesn’t Do Anything, Please Stop Posting It

A Facebook “privacy notice” you’ve doubtlessly seen posted and reposted on your feeds is totally bogus as you may have suspected, so, everyone, please stop posting it posthaste.

The Facebook privacy notice is filled with impressive legal defensiveness and even has official looking numbers for statutes and the word “aforementioned” and some yammering about “copyright laws.” It mentions something we’ve just heard of called “the Berner Convention,” which — it may surprise you — is not another name for Burning Man. (We were disappointed too.)

One can’t help but think that the Facebook privacy notice is a reflection of a bit of self-importance many people on social media seem to feel in suspecting others will swoop in and “steal” their 67 image photoset of Starbucks latte foam creations, and we hate to be the ones to break it to you that your kid is really not cute enough for Target to illegally swipe your myriad Instagram pics of him picking his nose for its ad campaigns.

The notice begins:

“In response to the new Facebook guidelines I hereby declare that my copyright is attached to all of my personal details, illustrations, graphics, comics, paintings, photos and videos, etc. (as a result of the Berner Convention). For commercial use of the above my written consent is needed at all times!”

Think that’s super legit with its legal insinuations? Now we’re gonna bust out some random en franςais at you, potential content thieves!

“Anyone reading this can copy this text and paste it on their Facebook Wall. This will place them under protection of copyright laws. By the present communiqué, I notify Facebook that it is strictly forbidden to disclose, copy, distribute, disseminate, or take any other action against me on the basis of this profile and/or its contents.”

Here come the codes, Facebook!

“The aforementioned prohibited actions also apply to employees, students, agents and/or any staff under Facebook’s direction or control. The content of this profile is private and confidential information. The violation of my privacy is punished by law (UCC 1 1-308-308 1-103 and the Rome Statute).”

The notice concludes with a suggestion to spam your friends and family with the Facebook privacy notice:

“Facebook is now an open capital entity. All members are recommended to publish a notice like this, or if you prefer, you may copy and paste this version. If you do not publish a statement at least once, you will be tacitly allowing the use of elements such as your photos as well as the information contained in your profile status updates…”

Alas, Snopes is at the ready with their debunking of the protections implied by the Facebook privacy notice, and the prognosis for your rights over your own Castleville scores is very grim indeed. Essentially, upon agreeing to join Facebook, you agree to any decisions they make about your data, and even quitting is no legal remedy for sharing.

Have your friends been sharing the Facebook privacy notice like wildfire over the past few days?