SAN FRANCISCO — Facebook's team of data scientists who had access to the daily lives of nearly 1.3 billion users at their fingertips operated with few limits until recently, the Wall Street Journal reported Wednesday.
Had the researchers worked for a university, they would have been required to get consent from participants in a study.
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But Facebook decided that users provided their consent when they agreed to the company's terms of service.
The terms of service at the time said data could be used to improve Facebook's products. The terms now say that user data can be used for company research.
Facebook says it has tightened guidelines for data research.