Time Magazine: Parents Should Be Careful With Facebook Scrapbook

facebook_scrapbookLast week, Facebook introduced a new feature called Scrapbook that lets parents organize and keep track of their children’s pictures on the site. However, some critics have pointed out that privacy-minded parents shouldn’t upload pictures of their kids to the social media site at all.

Time Magazine responded to the new feature with a column from tech writer (and new dad) John Patrick Pullen. In the column, Pullen laid out how he handles his young son’s online privacy, including only sharing photos in a private iCloud photo album and never posting pictures of the boy publicly to Facebook. As Pullen points out, the Children’s Online Privacy Protection Act says children under the age of 13 shouldn’t be on Facebook anyway; after all, the law is designed to protect their data, and facial recognition information is rapidly becoming just that.

Many parents like Pullen are also concerned that pictures of their children could potentially follow them forever and automatically transfer to their profiles when they turned 13, but Facebook responded to the Time column with a statement denying this.

“As part of this pilot, we’re exploring how to provide newcomers with the control and tools they need to choose whether photos in their scrapbooks become part of their presence on Facebook,” a Facebook spokesperson told the magazine. “Feedback from parents and teens will guide our approach.”

As secure as the Scrapbook feature is, the fundamental point of privacy advocates is correct: if you want to keep a picture completely secure, simply do not upload it to social media sites in the first place.

Image Credit: Facebook