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Facebook Like Button and Social Widgets

What are the Facebook Like Button and Social Widgets?

The Facebook Like Button and Social Widgets are functionalities developed by Facebook (now Meta) to enable website visitors to easily interact with content by liking or sharing it on the Facebook platform without leaving the website. These tools integrate directly into web pages, allowing for a straightforward method for users to express their appreciation for content or to share it with their network on Facebook.

By incorporating these widgets, website owners and content creators can facilitate social interaction directly from their websites. This not only makes it simpler for users to engage with the content but also aids in increasing the content’s visibility on Facebook. The direct integration aims to enhance the user experience by minimizing the steps required to share or like content, thereby encouraging more frequent interactions.

Additionally, the use of these widgets can provide website owners with valuable insights into how their content performs on Facebook. Data gathered through interactions can help in understanding user engagement levels and preferences, which can be critical for refining content strategy and improving overall engagement.

What is the purpose of this service?

The primary purpose of these services is to facilitate social sharing and content promotion on the Facebook platform. They enable users to interact with content through likes, shares, and other social actions directly from external websites, thereby extending the content’s reach and engagement on Facebook.

Which of my data is processed when I visit a website or use an app that runs the Facebook Like Button and Social Widgets?

When you visit a website or use an app that incorporates the Facebook Like Button and Social Widgets, Meta may process certain information about you as an end user. This includes:

  • Usage Data — Usage data is the information gathered automatically about website users and their actions. It covers device type, location, browser, operating system, visited page sequence, as well as technical details like IP addresses, request times, file sizes, and server response codes.

More information on how Meta processes your personal data can be found in their Privacy Policy.

What’s a privacy policy and why it matters to me?

A privacy policy is a legal document that explains how a business collects, uses, and manages your data. These documents are required under most privacy legislations worldwide, including the GDPR in the European Union, CPRA (an amendment to the CCPA) in the United States, FADP in Switzerland, and LGPD in Brazil, and are essential for two main reasons:

  1. Informed Consent — Privacy policies are crucial in providing you with the necessary information to give informed consent. You’ll know exactly what data you’re sharing and the purposes it will serve, ensuring no unexpected surprises about data usage.
  2. Protecting Your Rights —Privacy policies are designed to uphold your rights regarding your personal data. If a company doesn’t follow its own policy, it can be held legally accountable. Thus, understanding these policies equips you with the knowledge to protect your data rights and seek legal recourse if needed.

Understanding a privacy policy is key to maintaining control over your personal information in the digital age.

Does the Facebook Like Button and Social Widgets use cookies and what are my rights in relation to them?

Yes, the Facebook Like Button and Social Widgets may use cookies and install them on your devices. As such, websites and apps that use this service must provide a detailed cookie policy.

In general, websites and apps that use third-party cookies or their own cookies for tracking and analytics must comply with the law and therefore are required to obtain your express consent through a cookie or consent banner.

Under the European ePrivacy Directive (also known as the Cookie Law), websites and apps that utilize cookies or similar tracking technologies are required to inform users about their use and must preemptively block these technologies until consent is obtained.

What are cookies and trackers? How can they affect my privacy?

Cookies and trackers are digital technologies that websites use to gather and manage your data.

Cookies are small pieces of data stored in your browser, typically when you visit a website. Trackers, which include technologies such as cookies, unique identifiers, web beacons, embedded scripts, e-tags, and fingerprinting, enable the monitoring of your online activities, such as the pages you visit or ads you click on.

These technologies serve a variety of purposes, ranging from enhancing your internet experience to enabling personalized content and targeted advertising.

It’s crucial for internet users to understand cookies and trackers. Always review a website’s privacy and cookie policies to grasp how your data is utilized. This helps in balancing a personalized online experience with your privacy rights.

Which cookies may the Facebook Like Button and Social Widgets install on my devices?

Name of cookie How long it lasts (max age in seconds)
_fbp 7,776,000 (3 months)

Please note — This cookie operates alongside the Meta Pixel: Whenever the Meta Pixel is activated on a website and utilizes first-party cookies, it automatically creates and stores a unique identifier in an _fbp cookie for the site’s domain, assuming such a cookie doesn’t already exist. (source)