How to Disable Facebook Tagging

August 30, 2011, By Christian Cawley

Facebook users beware – the popular social networking service is addicted to making changes to the way it works that are likely to leave you regularly vexed, even perplexed. The latest alteration to what most people agree is a pretty good service (let’s face it, people are hardly leaving Facebook due to a lack of functionality!) is the addition of automatic photo tagging.

Thanks to facial recognition software, Facebook is able to tag people in photographs uploaded by their friends without any interaction. This could lead to all manner of embarrassing situations and has led to an embarrassing announcement from Facebook in which they confessed that the feature shouldn’t have been quietly introduced.

How to Disable Facebook Tagging

It seems that every time Facebook releases an update to the service they manage to upset their users, but fortunately in this particular case there is a way to undo the auto-tagging.

Who Uses Photo Tagging?

Tagging images with the names of the people that appear in them is a popular way of letting Facebook friends know that an image with them has been uploaded. It is also a popular way of sharing photos with other people that don’t appear in the picture.

After uploading a photo, adding a tag is a simple case of clicking on the image and typing the name of an existing Facebook friend. When this is done, that person will be informed that a photo of them is now on Facebook, and they might like to take a look at it.

If a photograph is uploaded that someone doesn’t want to be tagged in then they can easily open the image and look for their name; next to this they should see the linked text remove tag – clicking this will remove that person’s tag from the image. If you’re someone who doesn’t like to be tagged in images, there is no way to prevent manual tagging but you could drop friends a line to politely ask that they don’t do this again.

Disabling Automatic Tagging

You can prevent automatic tagging as well, this time by instructing Facebook not to suggest you as a person to be tagged. To do this, sign in to Facebook, open Account > Privacy Settings and in the Things others share section look for Suggest photos of me to friends.

By default this option is enabled, so click Edit settings to make changes to this. Note that the auto-tagging suggestions are only available to Facebook friends, and you should always receive notification that you have been tagged in an image. However if you’re happy that you want to disable this setting use the Enabled/Disabled drop down menu to make the change and confirm by clicking OK.

Be aware, of course, that this doesn’t prevent anyone from manually tagging you in an image.

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