Fred Stutzman has an excellent post on the recent Facebook terms of service kerfuffle, including his prescription for what Facebook must do to properly address user rights:
First, Facebook should place a reasonable lifespan (eighteen to twenty-four months) on information users identify as important. Facebook should delete my pictures within two years from the time I remove my account. Simple as that. Second, Facebook should work with a few policy and ethics organization to create a Facebook code of information ethics. A few members of this organization would comprise an external board that could review and approve that new features are in-line with the code of ethics. Finally, Facebook should hire an ombudsman. The ombudsman should be hired for a contractually-tenured period and be given a blog on a third-party server.
If Facebook plans to stick to its promise that “users will have a lot of input” in fashioning the next version of its terms of service, it will need to work hard at improving both communication and transparency. And, if Facebook really wants to its terms to “reflect the principles and values of the people using the service,” it would be wise to consider Stutzman’s suggestions.
Facebook, are you listening?