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Giving People More Visibility and Control

October 6, 2010ByLuke Shepard

Today, we announced several changes to help people better manage their Facebook experience around the web. One important change is the addition of a dashboard that adds more visibility and control for people who visit the Application Settings page. With this new dashboard, people will be able to see a simple view of the permissions that they’ve granted applications and when applications have last accessed their data.

Starting next week, the new Application Settings dashboard will include:

  • All applications a person has authorized and which data permissions have been granted (for example, access to profile information or ability to post to their Wall)
  • What data an application has recently accessed and when
  • Options for removing an application’s write permissions or removing the entire application

With these tools, people can understand what information they’ve shared and when it is being used on your applications and websites. You can build trust with your users by only accessing information when users would expect it. Here are a few tips:

  1. Drive users to login with Facebook: Compared to filling out sign-up forms, logging into a website with Facebook is easier and faster. We’ve seen users click through our permissions dialog an incredible 80% of the time on average.
  2. Ask only for the extended permissions you need: We’ve seen that the permission dialog CTRs decreases about 3% on average with each additional extended permission. Test this for your site, and consider waiting to request permissions contextually. For example, ask a user to grant access to their email address while they are signing up for your newsletter. Or only ask for permission to publish to their profile when they are doing something they might want to share with friends on Facebook.
  3. Access data when you need it: Users generally expect you’ll access their data on their behalf when they use your applications. Make sure you remove extraneous API calls so you aren’t calling for data months after a user has last used your application.

We believe that this increased visibility gives people the control to use Facebook more often and to bring their friends and interests to your applications.

Luke, an engineer on the Platform team, is checking out which applications have recently accessed his data.