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Facebook to Introduce New Tools to Protect Profile Pictures of Indian Women

These tools have been developed in partnership with multiple companies and Indian Safety Organizations that include Centre for Social Research, Breakthrough, Learning Links Foundation, and Youth Ki Awaaz

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Privacy in Facebook
Facebook user interface. Pixabay
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  • It will be in the control of the women as to who can download and share their profile pictures that include their faces
  • Depending on the experience in India, Facebook has plans to introduce this feature to other countries as well
  • According to reports- as per plans, wherever possible, Facebook would also prevent users from taking a screenshot of someone’s profile picture

June 25, 2016: Facebook has recently announced that it is going to introduce new tools and techniques to help the Indian women possess more control over the privacy regarding their profile photos, IANS reported. It will be in the control of the women as to who can download and share their photos that include their faces. This announcement brings the initiative of empowerment of the Indian women, one step further.

Aarati Soman, Product Manager at Facebook, stated in a post on Wednesday, “In our research with people and safety organization in India, we have heard that some women choose not to share profile pictures that include their faces anywhere on the internet because they are concerned about what may happen to their photos,” India TV News reports.

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Depending on the experience in India, Facebook has plans to introduce this feature to other countries as well. Research has shown that adding designs to profile pictures prevents misuse. According to the reports, the social media giant is also gearing up to help people with that feature.

These tools are developed to provide people with more safety online and help them exercise more control on the privacy issues. These tools have been developed in partnership with multiple companies and Indian Safety Organizations that include Centre for Social Research, Breakthrough, Learning Links Foundation, and Youth Ki Awaaz.

Since now, Indian users would notice a guide to include an optional profile picture guard while setting a profile picture.

Soman said further, “Other people will no longer be able to download, share or send your profile picture in a message on Facebook. People you are not friends with on Facebook won’t be able to tag anyone, including themselves, in your profile picture,” India TV News reported.

As per plans, wherever possible, Facebook would also prevent users from taking a screenshot of someone’s profile picture. Presently, this feature is available in androids only. Displaying a blue border and a shield around one’s profile picture as a cue to preventing misuse, is going to be introduced soon.

The company also partnered with an illustrator Jessica Singh, who got inspired from traditional Indian designs of textile including ‘Kantha’ and ‘Bandhni’ and created designs for users to include in their profile pictures.

Soman Says, “Based on preliminary tests, we’ve learned that when someone adds an extra design layer to their profile picture, other people are at least 75 per cent less likely to copy that picture” Soman said. She also added that one can report to Facebook if someone suspects that the profile picture with safeguard designs, is being misused in any way; and then that design can be used to determine whether that should be eliminated from the community.

– by Antara Kumar of NewsGram. Twitter: @ElaanaC
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Gap Apologised For Wrong China Map on its T-Shirt

Several other companies had issued similar apologies earlier this year after information on their websites appeared to conflict with China's territorial claims.

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US clothing brand Gap has apologised for selling T-shirts which it said showed an
Gap apologises for wrong Chinese map on its T-Shirts. Pixabay

US clothing brand Gap has apologised for selling T-shirts which it said showed an “incorrect map” of China.

The apology came after one person posted pictures of the T-shirt on Chinese social media network Weibo saying that Chinese-claimed territories, including “Southern Tibet” — a huge swathe of territory it claims in the northeast Indian state of Arunachal Pradesh, the island of Taiwan and the South China Sea were not shown on it, the BBC reported.

The post on Monday, which said that the T-shirt was being sold in Canada, drew the ire of Chinese netizens. In a statement, Gap said it “sincerely apologised for this unintentional error” and had pulled the T-shirts from the Chinese market and destroyed them.

“Gap Inc. respects China’s sovereignty and territorial integrity. We’ve learned that a Gap brand T-shirt sold in some overseas markets failed to reflect the correct map of China in the design,” the company said.

The company didn’t say whether the product would be withdrawn from sale in other markets.

US clothing brand Gap has apologised for selling T-shirts which it said showed an "incorrect map" of China.
Accurate Map of China, Pixabay

Several other companies had issued similar apologies earlier this year after information on their websites appeared to conflict with China’s territorial claims.

In January, Marriott International apologised to China after sending a letter to rewards club members that listed Tibet, Hong Kong, Macau and Taiwan as options on a question asking customers their countries of residence.

Fashion brand Zara and Delta Air Lines drew Beijing’s ire and apologised for listing Taiwan and/or Tibet as countries on drop-down menus on their websites.

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In 2017, German carmaker Audi was in hot water for omitting Taiwan and parts of western China on a map used at their annual meeting, while Mercedes-Benz apologised in February for quoting the Dalai Lama, the exiled spiritual leader of Tibet, on Instagram.

The White House had earlier described China’s claims as “Orwellian nonsense” and sharply criticised Beijing for trying to impose its “political correctness on American companies and their citizens”. (IANS)