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Facebook Photo Privacy, According to Facebook Engineer

Is A Facebook Photo Visible?

The list below, said Mitchell, is a checklist where the first item for which the condition is met will determine the visibility of a photo posted to Facebook (profiles only, though, not Pages).

This is what he wrote:

  1. Is it your photo? You can always see your own photos.
  2. Are you tagged in the photo? If so, the photo is always visible. It does not matter if the photo owner has you blocked, or anything else, the photo will always be visible to you. This is necessary, since anyone tagged in a photo has a right to untag themselves.
  3. Was the photo posted to your profile's wall? If so, the photo is always visible. This is necessary, since anyone should have the right to remove content from their own profile.
  4. Has the photo owner blocked you? If so, you may not see the photo.
  5. Does the owner of the photo allow friends-of-friends to see people tagged in their photos? If so, and if you are friends with anyone tagged in the photo, then the photo is visible.
  6. If the photo belongs to a "special album", for instance a wall album or profile picture album, then obey those privacy settings.
  7. If the photo has photo-specific privacy, for instance wall or mobile photos, obey that privacy.
  8. Obey the photo album privacy.

There is already some debate on the thread about whether or not this list is 100% accurate, but since it's coming from someone at Facebook who would know, we believe it is.


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