Facebook held a conference call today to announce that their next terms of service will be drafted with direct input from readers in the form of commentary, direct voting, and the creation of a “user council” to function as a sort of parliament. They’ve also introduced preliminary versions of two documents, Facebook Principles and a Statement of Rights and Responsibilities. TechCrunch paraphrases Zuckerberg on the call:
We are open to putting the documents up to a vote. The rules people must do when on the site and what we must do, a two way thing. There will be Comment periods, a council that will help on future revisions.
We do not own user data, they own their data. We never intended to give that impression and we feel bad that we did. This document is a foundation that we’re going to use our decisions going forward.
Here is the proposed Facebook Principles document:
The Facebook Principles
We are building Facebook to make the world more open and transparent, which we believe will create greater understanding and connection. Facebook promotes openness and transparency by giving individuals greater power to share and connect, and certain principles guide Facebook in pursuing these goals. Achieving these principles should be constrained only by limitations of law, technology, and evolving social norms. We therefore establish these Principles as the foundation of the rights and responsibilities of those within the Facebook Service.
1. Freedom to Share and Connect
People should have the freedom to share whatever information they want, in any medium and any format, and have the right to connect online with anyone – any person, organization or service – as long as they both consent to the connection.
2. Ownership and Control of Information
People should own their information. They should have the freedom to share it with anyone they want and take it with them anywhere they want, including removing it from the Facebook Service. People should have the freedom to decide with whom they will share their information, and to set privacy controls to protect those choices. Those controls, however, are not capable of limiting how those who have received information may use it, particularly outside the Facebook Service.
3. Free Flow of Information
People should have the freedom to access all of the information made available to them by others. People should also have practical tools that make it easy, quick, and efficient to share and access this information.
4. Fundamental Equality
Every Person – whether individual, advertiser, developer, organization, or other entity – should have representation and access to distribution and information within the Facebook Service, regardless of the Person’s primary activity. There should be a single set of principles, rights, and responsibilities that should apply to all People using the Facebook Service.
5. Social Value
People should have the freedom to build trust and reputation through their identity and connections, and should not have their presence on the Facebook Service removed for reasons other than those described in Facebook’s Statement of Rights and Responsibilities.
6. Open Platforms and Standards
People should have programmatic interfaces for sharing and accessing the information available to them. The specifications for these interfaces should be published and made available and accessible to everyone.
7. Fundamental Service
People should be able to use Facebook for free to establish a presence, connect with others, and share information with them. Every Person should be able to use the Facebook Service regardless of his or her level of participation or contribution.
8. Common Welfare
The rights and responsibilities of Facebook and the People that use it should be described in a Statement of Rights and Responsibilities, which should not be inconsistent with these Principles.
9. Transparent Process
Facebook should publicly make available information about its purpose, plans, policies, and operations. Facebook should have a town hall process of notice and comment and a system of voting to encourage input and discourse on amendments to these Principles or to the Rights and Responsibilities.
10. One World
The Facebook Service should transcend geographic and national boundaries and be available to everyone in the world.
“Live Blogging The Facebook Conference Call” [TechCrunch]
Facebook Principles (proposed) [Facebook]
“Statement of Rights and Responsibilities” (proposed) [Facebook]