10 Privacy Announcements Facebook's Zuckerberg Wishes He Could Make

Last Updated May 26, 2010 6:58 PM EDT

Facebook has taken so many kicks over how it handles privacy that its corporate ass -- which you can't see, because it's private -- must be black and blue by now. With Congress, the press and many outraged users breathing down its corporate neck, Facebook had no choice but to put CEO Mark Zuckerberg before reporters to explain how the company was going to change.

No, really, this time the executives meant it: Simpler privacy settings that would give users more control over their personal information.

Is it true? To some, Zuckerberg's spiel sounded like a sales pitch to keep things as they are. Given Facebook's history in the area of securing private information, you can't help but wonder if there's another shoe to drop after the announcement -- like when people change their privacy settings and later go back to find them reset. (A number of tech savvy users I know have claimed this happened to them in the past.) The temptation must be high when the bulk of your revenue comes from advertisers who insist on the customer inside scoop. My colleague Ben Popper thinks that the new privacy controls could gut Facebook's business.

So let's take a moment to ponder what Zuckerberg wishes he could have said today. And remember, you can't blame a guy for trying. Then again, maybe you can.

  1. "We could swear that you clicked 'everyone.'"
  2. All user house keys secured in Zuckerberg's office safe.
  3. Facebook hires a Chief Medium to channel J. Edgar Hoover.
  4. "You're getting sleepy, very sleepy. Promise? You remember no promise."
  5. Researchers announce that four out of five people are natural exhibitionists.
  6. Glass is this season's new aluminum siding.
  7. Facebook introduces new "like" buttons on your MasterCard and Visa.
  8. JenniCams for everyone!
  9. Jim Carrey to star in The Zuckerberg Show.
  10. Consumers let Facebook use as much personal info as real-world marketers do, and immediately clamor for benevolent old Facebook settings.
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    Erik Sherman is a widely published writer and editor who also does select ghosting and corporate work. The views expressed in this column belong to Sherman and do not represent the views of CBS Interactive. Follow him on Twitter at @ErikSherman or on Facebook.