This is not a duplicate of Can there be an option to keep your list of bookmarks private? for the reasons mentioned below.*
When I started using the favorites (now, bookmarks) feature years ago, I had no idea that the list of my favorited questions was public. I was under the impression that it was a private list and used it as such for a couple of years or so until I realized it wasn't. I'm pretty sure many new users still use it under the same assumption (which is a very reasonable one) every day. This is quite misleading and could easily lead to undesired privacy issues.
I can't think of any good reason to make that list public. So, can you please either make it private for all users or at least give users the option to hide it from their profiles?
This has been asked before and it got declined due to the fact that we now have the Follow feature, which is private. However, as I said in a comment under that answer, the two features have very, very different use cases:
There's a HUGE difference though. When you follow a post, you get notifications for almost any action that's taken on said post. If you use the "follow feature" as a substitution for the (private) bookmarks, you start receiving a lot of unwanted notifications as your followed-posts list grows.
I follow a post when I want to be notified of every action taken on that post. I favorite/bookmark a question simply to make it easier to find in the future. I don't want to be notified of every little action.
I hope I made my case for why bookmarks should be private and how the Follow feature (as nice as it is) is irrelevant here. That being said, if that's still out of the question (shrug!), then please do the bare minimum and make it very clear to users that their bookmarks list is publicly visible. This can be achieved in a number of ways. One idea would be to display a warning message for the first n times the user bookmarks a question. For example:
* In case it's not clear from the post, the following are the two reasons why I think this post is not a duplicate:
- The reason given for why the other request was declined was that the Follow feature can serve the same purpose that private bookmarks would serve. Here, I'm explaining exactly why that's not the case. So yes, it's technically the same request but with a counterargument. In my opinion, that alone is a good reason why this question should not be closed as a duplicate. See: Can we re-request features that were declined a sufficient while ago?
- It proposes an alternative suggestion in case the original request still won't be considered, even with the counterargument.
None of the two points above received a reply from the staff. If they end up receiving a status-declined as well, that's fine, but at least give them that chance to be considered.