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Facebook to axe regional networks in privacy shake-up

In an open letter on the social-networking site, top dog Mark Zuckerberg has confirmed that the axe will fall on regional networks, ostensibly for privacy reasons

Facebook top dog Mark Zuckerberg has confirmed that regional networks are to be axed, in a shake-up of privacy options. Zuckerberg has posted an open letter on the site that outlines the reasoning for ditching regional networks.

New privacy settings were announced in July, including the option to set who can see a photo, post or link. This includes an 'everyone' option, making your posting open to all Facebook users. The option to make your postings available to all members of your regional network is being removed because many of the larger networks are so big as to be pointless as privacy options.

A link to El Zuck's blog post appears on users' profiles when logging in. It's only location-based networks that are getting the chop -- networks based around groups such as companies and schools will continue. We don't see the point of this -- country networks with millions of people may be unwieldy for privacy purposes but we still like being in the network, and smaller location-based networks, like towns, are still workable. We see it as an attempt to push users away from restricting their postings, repositioning Facebook as a stream of shared content similar to -- whisper it -- a certain microblogging site that rhymes with 'bitter'.

One thing's for sure: Facebook users aren't shy in complaining about changes, so, if the move is unpopular, Zuckerberg and company will know about it. Update your status in our comments.