While Facebook’s Terms of Service have consistently barred businesses from engaging with their communities using a Profile (versus a Page), there has been very little movement from the platform in the way of policing those presences that disregard the terms until this year. Today however, I’ve seen what may be the first real step in its foray to weed out businesses that are engaging on the platform inappropriately.
Facebook is asking, “Is this your friend’s real name?” Here’s more on Facebook’s Name Policy.
Some are concerned that this is an attempt to identify individuals who are using nicknames instead of legal names on the platform. While that may be true, I also see it as a prompt that will allow individual users to anonymously report Profiles that are run by businesses. Once a Profile is revealed or designated as fake (meaning it’s not the Profile of a human being), it runs the risk of being closed and removed from Facebook’s servers. That’s all your work and connections … gone with the push of a button.
“Who might do such thing”, you ask? Perhaps people who are tired of being spammed with too many Event Invitations and Private Messages; Pages don’t have this capability for invasive activity. Possibly your competition who is playing by Facebook’s rules and is tired of your flagrant disregard for the Terms of Service; a leveling of the playing field. Maybe a very upset customer; revenge served cold.
Regardless of who reports you, if you have a business engaging on Facebook through a Profile instead of a Page, it’s high time you started doing things properly. Before you wake up on a random Tuesday and find your entire Facebook presence gone.