Facebook: Voting on new policies starts .. now!

As we reported here last week, Facebook received enough comments to trigger a user referendum  on its proposal for changing some of its privacy and governance policies. The giant social network announced Monday that the voting period is now open and will last for seven days. It also announced a few tweaks to its proposal based on recent input, and plans to answer more questions during a webcast to be held Tuesday at 9:30 am Pacific Standard time at this url .

It’s most likely that the proposed changes — including an elimination of future voting on other changes — will be adopted.  That’s because Facebook’s rules, first enacted when the network was much smaller, require at least 30 percent of users to cast digital ballots in order for the outcome to be binding. Otherwise, it’s just an advisory vote. And since Facebook now counts 1 billion active users, the hurdle for a binding outcome is pretty high.

Of course, the company could decide to modify the changes further, based on input they receive. And some observers give the company credit for trying to provide users with some channels for input, even if the process proved unwieldy. But some users and privacy groups have been vocal in their opposition to the latest proposals.

We’ll  let you know how it turns out.

Brandon Bailey Brandon Bailey (323 Posts)

Brandon Bailey covers Google, Facebook and Yahoo for the San Jose Mercury News, reporting on the business and culture of the Internet.