Google responds to Buzz user feedback

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Google responds to Buzz user feedback

Several changes to user privacy options.

Google has promised to make changes to its Buzz social networking tool just two days after launching the service.

The company said in a blog post that it had listened to user feedback, particularly in terms of user privacy, and will make a number of alterations.

Google has received almost nine million posts and comments about Buzz, and is receiving 200 posts a minute from mobile phones alone.

Some of the comments relate to feature requests from users, but it is the privacy implications that are highest on the list of concerns.

"In particular there has been concern from some people who thought that their contacts were being made public without their knowledge (in particular the lists of people they follow, and the people following them)," said Google.

"Others felt that they had too little control over who could follow them, and were upset that they lacked the ability to block people who did not yet have public profiles from following them."

Google confirmed that it will make the various opt-out options easier to see within the next 24 hours.

"We heard from people that the checkbox for choosing not to display this information was too hard to find, and we have changed the notice to make it very clear," the firm said.

The fact that followers are automatically shown online will also be changed, and Google will also make it easier for users to block followers.

"If you don't want to share the lists of people who are following you, and people you are following publicly on your profile, you can always opt out during the profile set-up when you first use Buzz or at any time from the edit profile page," Google said.

"We are making this option more prominent in the set up process to ensure that everyone who wants to hide these lists can do so easily."

The company said that it looks forward to hearing more suggestions, and will "continue to improve the Buzz experience with user transparency and control top of mind".

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