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Help Center - Expanded Privacy Controls

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Expanded Privacy Controls

Upgraded on 6/30/2010.

You can now adjust the privacy controls on your account from a link "Privacy Controls" at the top of the Settings page in My Account. There is also a Privacy Controls link near the top of your My Profile page, if you have created a Public Profile.

You can use the Privacy Controls to decide who sees what about you.  You can choose from "Everyone," "Friends of Friends," "Friends," and "Only Me" to determine who sees your:

  • Profile
  • Last login
  • Personal info (birthday, city/state, email address, telephone number, mailing address)
  • Lists (Bookshelf, Wish List, Friends, Reviews)
  • Number of books you have sent/number of books you have received
  • Online status

You can even customize these settings further, by creating Tags on your Friends page to make "groups" of friends, and then using those tag lists (groups) when you adjust your privacy controls.  

For example, you can decide that you don't want anyone you work with to see your online status. But you DO want your Friends to see your online status.  The trouble is, some of your co-workers are on your Friends list.  So, to keep your co-workers from seeing your online status, you would go to your Friends list, and create the Tag "co-workers". Then, when you adjust your privacy control setting for "online status" you would choose "Friends" and click the "Exceptions" button, then select the group "co-workers" that comes up.  Now all of your Friends can see your online status - EXCEPT Friends who are in your "co-workers" group.


  • When you view your own profile, you will see ALL information. This will NOT be what is shown to other members.  What is shown to others will be what you have set in your privacy controls.
  • You will have a pre-created group in your Friends list, of "auto-accepted friends" which will tell you which of your Friends was auto-accepted if you have this option chosen in your Privacy Controls.  You will see the "auto-accepted friends" tag on your Friends list to denote those friends.
  • Other members will not see their "status" in your privacy controls.
  • Other members will not see their Tags/groups in your Friends list.
  • Other members will not be notified if you remove them as Friends.
  • You can also specify how your member name is displayed throughout the site by using the controls at the top of the Privacy Controls page.  (There is no need to save changes to your Member Name Display - the changes take effect immediately after selecting from the dropdowns.) 
  • You can click the Restore Defaults button to show just your first name, last initial and Nickname.
  • Some of you will notice that we have eliminated the "Lite Friend" category - all your Friends are just "Friends" now.  We have tagged your former Lite Friends for you with a "Lite Friends" tag on your Friends list, to create a Lite Friends group, and that group is excluded from seeing anything you had opted to be viewable only by Full Friends before.
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