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See What Facebook Publicly Publishes About You

With Facebook’s new Open Graph API causing such a stir, many people are questioning what Facebook is publishing to the public. Developer Ka-Ping Yee has created a simple tool shows you what everyone else can see.

To check your profile for public information, all you need to do is load up the tool and type in your Facebook ID — this is the name right after facebook.com/ on your profile page (if you haven’t set a username, it’s the string of numbers at the end of the URL). Alternatively, you can search for your name or email address.

The tool will then load all your profile information. All your information outside the “metadata” box is public (for example, in the above picture, that means that everyone can see my “website” links). To see if a particular section within the metadata box (such as activities, favourite movies, etc) is visible to the public click on its link — if it comes up empty, it’s not viewable to the public. Note, though, that if it’s not public, it may very well be viewable to friends of your friends, which is still pretty darn public — so check your privacy settings to be sure it’s what you want. If clicking on a section comes up with something like the picture below, then everything listed is available for the public — and any website that uses the Open Graph API — to see.

Facebook does already have a built-in tool within privacy settings to do this, but it’s nice to have an external tool to double-check, and with the new Open Graph being a bit confusing for some people, it should help you sleep at night knowing exactly what is and is not public.

What does Facebook publish about you and your friends? [via GigaOM]


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