HK Business News

Beware the So-Called Privacy Protection Notice on Facebook: It’s FAKE!

A privacy notice, that supposedly offers protection from Facebook’s new guidelines on users’ individual posts, is finding its way onto many Facebook profiles over the Internet, including many users in Hong Kong. It’s unofficial and it doesn’t actually do anything to protect you.

Here’s what the so-called “protection” notice looks like:

“In response to the new Facebook guidelines I hereby declare that my copyright is attached to all of my personal details, illustrations, graphics, comics, paintings, photos and videos, etc. (as a result of the Berner Convention). For commercial use of the above my written consent is needed at all times!

(Anyone reading this can copy this text and paste it on their Facebook
Wall. This will place them under protection of copyright laws.) By the present communiqué, I notify Facebook that it is strictly forbidden to disclose, copy, distribute, disseminate, or take any other action against me on the basis of this profile and/or its contents. The aforementioned prohibited actions also apply to employees, students, agents and/or any staff under Facebook’s direction or control. The content of this profile is private and confidential information. The violation of my privacy is punished by law (UCC 1 1-308-308 1-103 and the Rome Statute).”

It says that if you avoid publishing this statement you’ll be giving Facebook the rights to your posts. It’s about the same as putting a sign around your neck stating you are not responsible for committing murder. The law says you cannot go around murdering other folks – the law was there before you committed the murder so it has precedence the same as the Facebook TOS has precedence over anything you choose to not want (or want). As with every TOS on the planet, you can disagree and stop using the service, but what you already posted is still property of Facebook to use as they choose.

In contrast to this fake protection notice, another post written by a Facebook user, Sebastian Danielache, that is being circulated over Facebook is genuine, ironic and completely fits into the TOS, since he is giving all the rights away.

Here is what his post looks like.

In response to the new Facebook guidelines I hereby declare that anyone can use anything I post, republish it, attribute it to themselves or anyone, sell it and become a millionaire, and share none of the profits with me. If you do that successfully, it is proof that I missed a profit opportunity and thereby deserve to be bested.”



About the author

Alan Chiu Tsang

Alan is a freelancer photographer and author for
He graduated from Hong Kong university in 2005.