Share your selfies, tension free, says Roxna Irani of Facebook as she emphasises on safety features of platform

Speaking at Fuel for India 2020, Roxna Irani, Product Manager, Facebook, said that it is committed to making the platform safe for users, especially women.

With more than 346.2 million Indians on Facebook, the platform is exceedingly popular in the country. But according to Roxna Irani, Product Manager, Facebook, as per the GSME report, South India has the widest gender gap in mobile internet usage.

“Women are 51 percent less likely to use the internet than men. Why? Largely because of the safety and security concerns surrounding sharing their pictures online,” she said.

Roxna was speaking on “Building for a safe and open internet for women” on the first day of Facebook’s Fuel for India 2020 featuring stories of how the Facebook family of apps is shaping India’s growth in different ways.

Roxna said that a staggering number of selfies are taken every day across the world and its real magic is unlocked when you share it with friends and family. “Unfortunately, not everyone in India feels the same sense of freedom sharing those pictures, especially women. They are scared to post those pictures online because they are extremely nervous about them being misused.”

After extensive research in India, she said while Facebook realised there were lots of existing privacy settings on Facebook, despite that, some users, especially women fear getting their privacy lost, which holds them back from expressing themselves on the platform.

“To provide our users with the very goal of providing users more control over their experience, we at Facebook launched a safety feature, Lock Your Profile. When a user locks a profile with one single toggle, it means any photos or posts she shares on Facebook is not visible to anyone who is not her friend,” she said.

In 2017, Facebook launched Profile Picture Guard that was designed to protect one’s current profile pic from being downloaded and shared by non-friends.

“Though there was a strong adoption of the product, we also saw users wanted to be in strong control over their photos on Facebook. That aspired us to build this new feature. It allows users to lock their profile to non-friends and as we would like to say, share tension-free,” she added.

Roxana believes this is just a small part of the larger efforts in making Facebook safer for everyone, especially women.

“We have clear policies on online safety and digital programmes and have cutting-edge technologies to prevent abuse from happening in the first place. After all, Facebook is a great canvas for connecting and expressing and we aspire for our users to feel in control and empowered on our platform. So those selfies you took early in the week? They ought to be shared, not just stay on your camera roll after you lock your profile. Do so, and do so, tension-free,” she said.

Edited by Saheli Sen Gupta


Updates from around the world