Photo of hand with pen and the words AI

What writers need to know about Meta’s new privacy policy

Meta, the owners of Facebook, Instagram and WhatsApp, have recently updated their privacy policies so that they can use anything you post to develop its AI models.

This change may have significant implications for users, especially writers and other authors and creators who share their works on these platforms.

The updated privacy policy for Meta will come into effect on 26 June 2024. By agreeing to Meta’s terms and conditions (when you set up a new account, or if you’ve agreed to the terms and conditions in the past), you will automatically agree to Meta using your information to develop its AI models. This includes any text, photos, posts, and captions shared on Instagram and Facebook.

How does this impact writers, authors and other creators?

Many writers build an online following to encourage and help people to engage with their work. This can include sharing text, pictures, videos or audio which contain writers’ intellectual property. Many users may therefore find the content they post to Instagram and Facebook used by Meta to develop AI models without their explicit consent.

What can I do?

You can object to Meta using your content to train AI but please note, they are not obligated to honour your request. You need to fill in a form and they will consider your request. Here is how you do this

For Instagram

Go to the main menu item (three horizontal lines) in the top right corner of your app – scroll down to About – click on Privacy Policy – in the top box click on Right to object – fill in the form (you will be required to enter an authentication code sent to your email address).

For Facebook

If your account is not linked to Instagram, or if you don’t have an Instagram account, go to the Settings icon in the top right of the app – Privacy Policy (under Community Standards and legal policies) – click on About your right to object – fill in the form (you will be required to enter an authentication code sent to your email address).

What else can I do to protect myself?

For writers, authors and creators, this policy change is a reminder of the need to stay informed and vigilant about changes to terms and conditions of tools like Instagram and Facebook, so the benefits of use can be considered against potential risks.

Writers should also be careful when posting or sharing any copyrighted content online and should only post or share works that they own or have explicit permission to share. Sharing clips of TV shows, or pages of scripts where there is an agreement in place, could amount to copyright infringement.

Staying informed and proactive is crucial in this evolving digital landscape. If you are concerned about your data, including your works, being used for AI training, take the necessary steps to opt-out or object where possible, and carefully consider the material you’re using on these platforms.

WGGB members can contact for individual advice.

Find out more

Read our policy position statement on AI.

Read about our recommendations on AI in our 2024 General Election manifesto Putting writers at the heart of the story.

Read our guides My book has been used to ‘train’ AI – what can I do? And Using AI as a research and writing tool – the risks