tag, you’re it

Here we go again:

“Tag Suggestions are only made to people when they add new photos to the site, and only friends are suggested.

“If for any reason someone doesn’t want their name to be suggested, they can disable the feature in their privacy settings.”

Me, last year:

Perhaps it’s time to accept a new set of base assumptions about online privacy: that coders set the rules, whether they know it or not; that most users accept the defaults, whether they ought to or not; that transgressions become norms, whether checked or not; and that those who research and advocate and educate will continue to fight the last battle, while those with the power to implement their advice most directly will ignore it until shamed into acting.

And as I said in reply to danah boyd six years ago: tagging carries a power dynamic.

In the wake of the Apple location-data retention furore, and the staged concern of the subsequent Senate hearing, I wondered whether we might actually see a more concerted resistance to the weaselry that is ‘well, you can just disable it.’ (On more cynical days, I wonder whether Facebook and its non-privacy policy is actually a front for a grand scheme to conquer the web through ‘how do I turn off…?’ content farming.) But that’s not likely to happen, and so the countdown begins for another flackish faux-apology when the tagging defaults receive another little tweak.