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In Sea Change, Zuckerberg Now Says 'the Future Is Private'

He announces major Facebook overhaul
By Rob Quinn,  Newser Staff
Posted May 1, 2019 1:03 AM CDT
Attendees stick notes on a Facebook logo at F8, the Facebook's developer conference, Tuesday, April 30, 2019, in San Jose, Calif.   (AP Photo/Tony Avelar)
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(Newser) – "I know that we don't exactly have the strongest reputation on privacy right now, to put it lightly," Mark Zuckerberg quipped at the annual F8 Facebook developer's conference—but he promised that the company will turn it around. In his keynote address, the CEO announced a major overhaul of Facebook's app and website, calling the new focus on private messaging and the "Stories" feature part of a "major shift in how we run this company," Wired reports. "I believe the future is private," Zuckerberg told the conference. The redesign, which does away with the Facebook app's signature blue banner, includes features that encourage users to interact more with close friends as well as communities that share their interests, reports Reuters.

Zuckerberg said that while the company is making it easier to connect with groups, it is doing more to remove those with harmful or "misleading" content. The revamped mobile app is now live for users in the US, while the desktop version will arrive later this year, the AP reports. Numerous other changes to Facebook, Instagram, and WhatsApp were announced at the conference, including an expansion of Facebook Dating, which will launch in the US this year, TechCrunch reports. Users will be allowed to add up to nine friends to their "Secret Crush" list, and they'll be notified if their friend also has a secret crush on them. The company is also testing a feature that hides the number of "likes" on Instagram photos, and is planning to make WhatsApp updates more private. (Read more Facebook stories.)

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