IMAGE: AYTAC UNAL / ANADOLU AGENCY / GETTY IMAGES
Twitter users who logged into their account on Wednesday were greeted with a new notification.
“The control you have over what information Twitter shares with its business partners has changed,” Twitter’s pop-up message. “Specifically, your ability to control mobile app advertising measurements has been removed, but you can control whether to share some non-public data to improve Twitter’s marketing activities on other sites and apps.”
“These changes, which help Twitter to continue operating as a free service, are reflected now in your settings,” the notification continued, only allowed a user to click an “OK” button to continue.
So what does that all mean?
Basically, Twitter is giving advertisers more private information about what you do on its mobile app. And, simply put, there’s nothing you can do about it if you want to continue using the platform.
Before this update, users could turn off a setting called “Share your data with Twitter’s business partners.” This option disabled Twitter from sharing information about the advertisements you watched or interacted with on the platform. According to Twitter, this information could “include IP address and mobile device advertising identifiers.”
However, Twitter reiterates in its updated terms that it still does not share your name, email, phone number, or Twitter username.
These new privacy settings are now the default for most Twitter users. The exception is for users in the European Union, European Free Trade Association states, and the United Kingdom. Due to their stringent laws protecting users’ privacy online, a user would need to opt in to sharing this information, if they’d like to allow Twitter to share it with its advertisers.
While the social media company mostly chalked the issue up to a bug, it also caused the company to look at other issues related to its advertising plans and switch strategies.