British Parliament: Facebook Should Issue Warnings Like Those on Cigarette Packs

warningAccording to a group of British Members of Parliament (MPs), Facebook should be forced to feature privacy warnings similar to the mandatory health warnings on cigarette packs. The British government, angry over the site’s lack of ability to detect terrorist threats, have vocally criticized the social media giant with increasing regularity in recent weeks.

The committee said that Facebook should be required to simplify their privacy warnings, and that many millions of users agree to the site’s terms and conditions without understanding them.

“Let’s face it, most people click yes to terms and conditions contracts without reading them, because they are often laughably long and written in the kind of legalese you need a law degree from the USA to understand,” said Andrew Miller, the chairman of the Commons Science and Technology Committee. “Socially responsible companies wouldn’t want to bamboozle their users, of course, so we are sure most social media developers will be happy to sign up to the new guidelines on clear communication and informed consent that we are asking the Government to draw up.”

For its part, Facebook responded to the government criticism by pointing out that it in fact did recently simplify its privacy policies, with the intention of being more understandable to users.