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Facebook is making it easier to shift your data off the platform

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Facebook (opens in new tab) has expanded its export tool to enable users to transfer more of their data (opens in new tab) to other services.

Social media platforms such as Facebook have long been criticized by open data advocates as walled gardens that hoard data by restricting data portability. 

Facebook has been trying to improve its reputation in this regard since 2019 when it first launched a tool (opens in new tab) that enabled users to copy all their photos and videos to Google Photos (opens in new tab).

The social networking giant has since been campaigning for data portability laws and is again using the update to its data sharing (opens in new tab) tool to call on lawmakers to create guidelines for moving data between platforms. 

Facebook users can now use the export tool to enable users to transfer a copy of their posts and notes to various other services such as Blogger (opens in new tab), Google Docs (opens in new tab), and WordPress (opens in new tab)

The company is also banking on the new export functionality as an example of how lawmakers can shape guidelines to enable a secure mechanism for the flow of data between all kinds of social services.

A standardized policy will also help resolve issues around the ambiguity of data ownership. For instance, when users will transfer their posts and notes through the new feature, the transfers will not include comments from Facebook friends or posts that friends left on a user's page. 

That’s because of the legal ambiguity around the ownership of that data (you vs your friends), which may lead to privacy concerns. 

Meanwhile, in a conversation with CNBC, Facebook’s public policy manager Bijan Madhani shared that Facebook plans to continue expanding the tool to enable users to export more of their data to a lot more services and platforms. 

Via CNBC (opens in new tab)

Mayank Sharma
Mayank Sharma

With almost two decades of writing and reporting on Linux, Mayank Sharma would like everyone to think he’s TechRadar Pro’s expert on the topic. Of course, he’s just as interested in other computing topics, particularly cybersecurity, cloud, containers, and coding.