Randi Zuckerberg, the sister of Facebook chief executive Mark, has complained after a “private” photo she posted on the social network was spread on Twitter by someone she had not intended to see it.
According to the Telegraph.co.uk report, Ms Zuckerberg, who worked for Facebook until last year, was apparently caught out by tagging other family members in the photograph, which meant their friends, as well as hers, could see it.
The picture, which shows the Zuckerberg family in their kitchen, reacting to Facebook’s new iPhone “Poke” app, appeared in the newsfeed of Callie Schweitzer, a friend of another sister. She reposted it to Twitter, where it was widely shared, which Ms Zuckerberg complained was “way uncool”.
“Not sure where you got this photo. I posted it to friends only on Facebook,” she told Ms Schweitzer.
Ms Schweitzer explained that she had seen it in her Facebook feed because she is friends with another member of the Zuckerberg family, tagged in the picture. Ms Zuckerberg accepted the explanation but said her annoyance was “not about privacy settings, it’s about human decency”.
"I'm just sensitive to private photos becoming 'news'," she added. The incident nevertheless drew schadenfreude from Facebook critics, who have long claimed it makes members share more than they intend to and that privacy settings are too complicated.
Dan Lyons, a technology commentator at ReadWrite, said Ms Zuckerberg’s “human decency” claim had taken her anger to a “whole new level of mental”.
“How... invasive. What a violation. How terrible that someone might take something that belongs to you and use it in ways that you had not anticipated, and for which you had not given explicit permission!,” he said sarcastically, after listing a series of alleged moral and privacy failing by Facebook.
Most recently, Facebook’s prompted an outcry by members of its smartphone photo service Instagram by changing the terms and conditions to give it much greater power over the images they post. The anger forced a partial climbdown.
Danny Sullivan, of Search Engine Land, rejected Ms Zuckerberg's claim it was "not about privacy settings".
"Actually, it’s a lot about privacy settings, and even Facebook’s improved systems makes this hard," he said.
It is not the first time the Zuckerberg family has been unwillingly exposed by Facebook. Last December, a security flaw meant strangers were able to access some of Mark Zuckerberg's private images, which were then widely published online.