Facebook Privacy Basics (January 2015): Part 2 - How Others Can Interact with You

Posted on 2/3/2015 by in facebook privacy

In the first part of this 3-Part Series, we looked at what others can see about you on Facebook and how you can change your privacy settings to set some privacy boundaries. In this second part we will explore how others can interact with you, based on your Facebook privacy settings. In other words, these are the controls you can put in place that affect you and your Facebook content.

Part 2:  How Others Can Interact With You.

In Part 1 we looked at what others can see about you on Facebook.  Now lets unpack how you can manage your privacy and how you want others to be able to interact with you on Facebook.

Managing what others can post on your timeline.

Your timeline is just that… YOUR timeline.  Because of that, you should be allowed to decide to who gets to put stuff there!  Knowing how to do it is the key. 

  • ·      In your Settings, choose Timeline and Tagging
  • ·      Locate the section Who Can Post On Your Timeline
  • ·      Manage the menu options by selecting Friends or Only Me
  • ·      In this menu you can also choose to review posts that your friends tag you in before they appear on your Timeline.

Keep in mind, however, if you are tagged in a post, it will still show in someone else’s news feed that is tagged in it as well – even before you reviewed it.  The review process is simply for you to decide if it will show on your wall.  And you always have the option to visit the post and remove your tag.

Why wouldn’t I want content I’m tagged into automatically land on my Timeline?  There are several reasons really, but here are just a few.

  • ·      If it’s something I’ve already posted and a friend is re-sharing and tagging me, I don’t want duplicate content on my Timeline.
  • ·      If it’s offensive to me for any reason I don’t want it on my timeline.  I respect the opinions and views of others, even when I don’t agree – but it doesn’t mean I want those on my Timeline.
  • ·      I also don’t allow and foul language on my Timeline at all.
  • ·      If it’s spam – under no circumstances should spam posted I’m tagged in ever land on my Timeline to have my network be subject to them.
  • ·      Here’s a sticky one…  I may like the source of a given image I’m tagged in – it could be clean humor – but if the SOURCE of the image or the Facebook page that originally posted it goes against any of my values or beliefs, I wont allow it to my Timeline.  This is an interesting on that people don’t often even consider.  Look at the link on the image being shared to your wall.  If it offends you, but you like that content, you can always save the photo itself and then repost it by uploading the image on it’s own.

I would encourage you to come up with your own set of “boundaries” for what is acceptable and then take the time to review posts for your Facebook Timeline.  I feel it’s a responsibility, and I take it seriously.

Who can like and comment on the things I post on Facebook?

The bottom line is that when you post something, anyone can like and comment on your post if it’s set to Public.  Use the menu option for EACH post to select your audience if this is something you are concerned about.  It also allows any of your “Followers” to post and like as well, unless you change those settings.  As you prepare your post, use the post settings menu:

You can also modify what your Followers can and cannot do, and your notifications under Follower Settings.  It’s good to review these to make sure you feel comfortable with people following your posts and what is acceptable to you.

If you want to allow people to follow you and your posts, but you want to exclude certain people, you would need to block them specifically from viewing any and all of your content.  This is done under the Blocking section of your Facebook settings.

Side note: If you get all those annoying game invites, you can actually go in and block those games/apps. My list is a mile long!

What you need to know about photo tagging.

If you get tagged in a photo by someone else and you don’t want to be, you can go in and physically remove that tag.  To do so:

  • ·      Go to the actual post you are tagged in
  • ·      Click on the “more” button which looks like 3 little dots.
  • ·      Click “Remove Tag” from the options.

Once you do this, nobody can retag you in that specific post.  Your name may still show, but it wont be tagged any longer.  If it’s something you just plain don’t want to be associated with on Facebook, you can choose the “I don’t like this photo” option from the “more” button and choose a reason you don’t like it.  You’ll be prompted to message the person who posted it asking them to take it down.

What you can do when someone is bothering you on Facebook.


We touched on this a little earlier.  If someone is bothering you on Facebook, or you just plain don’t like their content, you can always unfriend them.  It’s good to note that when you unfriend or block someone, that person is not notified, so your privacy remains in tact.

There is a difference between unfriending and blocking:

·      UNFRIEND:  When you unfriend someone, they can still potentially see your posts based on your privacy settings, and can see your comments and likes on other people’s content as well.  The person you unfriend can also potentially still “Follow” you.

·      BLOCK:  When you block someone, they can no longer:

o   Add you as a friend.

o   See the things you post that are not shared publicly.  (Remember always that public is public.)

o   Tag you.

o   Invite you to groups or events

o   Start a conversation with you or message you in any way.

If someone has blocked you, and you try to contact them, their name and profile information will not be visible to you at all.  In fact, they won’t even show in your search results.

You can block people through your privacy settings under “Blocking” or by visiting the person’s profile and click on the “more” button (three dots) and choose the Block option.  Once you unfriend or block someone they can no longer see the content you share with Friends.

Public is Public

Anything you share publicly is just that – public.  Unless you have someone completely blocked, they can see your content.  Always remember that.

If you believe you have been hacked.

If you are unable to access your account because the email or password was changed unknowingly, you may have been hacked or accessed without your permission.

If you believe this to be the case, go to the Help Center and choose the option “I think my account was taken over by someone else.”  This will help you begin to secure your account once again.  This will take you through a step-by-step process to update your account settings and review and recent account changes, and to reset your password.

It’s always good to review the Security Tips in the Facebook Help Center to follow best practices for keeping your Facebook account secure.

Hopefully you grabbed some good privacy nuggets in this second part of ta 3-part series.  In the third installment we will look at customizing your feed and the things you actually see.

Be safe Facebookers!


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