Why I hate Facebook

Quite some time ago, I joined Facebook because writers need to have a Facebook presence. Honestly, the Facebook interface is not particularly friendly or pretty and it’s designed to make you accidentally expose information you don’t want exposed to the world. When I joined, there was no such thing as a Fan page. By the time there was such a thing as as Fan page, I had hundreds of facebook friends. And, when I tried to make a fan page, the whole process simply failed. It’s quite possible the failure was related to my sucky internet, but really, it doesn’t matter.

About 3-4 months ago, after, suspiciously, Facebook made several changes in the whole Fan page functionality, I was able to make a Fan page.

Facebook’s solution for people who had regular pages who actually needed to have Fan pages was to have this totally spammy email that was supposed to encourage people to go like your Fan page. This email is NOT customizable. Anyone on Facebook has at some time or another gotten one of those emails “Fred likes Fred’s Fan Page and thinks you might too…” This email is roundly ignored and despised by the recipients. I know this because 1) I ignore and despise them myself and 2) I hear everywhere — twitter, facebook, blogs etc. that users HATE those spammy emails and they HATE the people who send them.

For Pete’s sake! I have/had nearly 800 friends. But I duly sent one of those spammy emails and got … maybe 3 likes on my Fan page. One tweet on one day on Twitter bumped me up to about 50.

Meanwhile, my nieces and nephew are friends on my facebook page and they are young young young. A lot of my family and some people from work are also facebook “friends.” This severely limits the things I feel I can say on facebook.

So I started emailing people individually, telling them I was moving my facebook presence to an Author Page and providing a link to the page. This customized and personal email got close to a 100 percent response rate. I would send the email, and unfriend the person from my regular facebook Page and my LIKES on my Fan Page pretty much equaled the emails I sent. I’m just under 700 friends now.

But now facebook thinks I’m spamming people. Supposing I can still send any emails at all, it’s going to take me over a year to contact everyone.

I can’t email my friend lists (I have Family, Authors, Writing, etc) because you can only email 20 people at once — that is, if your friend list is more than 20 people, you can’t email that list.

There’s no way to convert a regular Facebook page to a Fan page.

The email Facebook allows users to send regarding Fan Pages is despised and ignored.

If you were unlucky enough to join Facebook before they had Fan pages and unlucky enough to collect a lot of friends, you’re hosed.

I think the only thing I can try is to create a “Move this” list, add twenty people at a time, send my email, and then unfriend them from my regular page. Then move another 20 people onto the list. Rinse and repeat.

There is no way to contact facebook. They’ve removed the contact email form. Amazon has AMAZING customer support and they’re orders of magnitude less evil than facebook about their privacy practices.

That’s why I hate facebook.

Here’s a link to my facebook Fan page. I would be really grateful if you wanted to go like me there and remove yourself from my other facebook page.

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8 Responses to “Why I hate Facebook”

  1. KD James says:

    Okay, serious question. I just joined FB last week. I haven’t made a big deal about it because I’m not sure I want to stay there. FB is weird. But it’s growing on me. So far I have 23 friends (who are also real life friends and they know about it because I mentioned it on a group blog).

    I made a Fan page, but it seems ridiculous and presumptuous to have one when I’m not yet published. So I haven’t done anything to it other than name it.

    Should I concentrate on (and publicize) the Fan page? Make the personal page private? Unfriend everyone over there and tell them to go like the Fan page instead?

    I’d be happy to go over and “like” you. But not until I figure out the rest of this stuff. Help?

    Guess that’s more than one question…

    • Carolyn Jewel says:

      KD, just make sure that your current facebook friends are actually your friends, and don’t cross the streams, as it were. You’ll want to have a “friends and family” facebook separate from the Author stuff. It sounds to me like your current friends are your friends In Real Life, so keep them there. There’s no reason they can’t also be Fans. It gets trickier when someone writes you a lovely fan letter — that doesn’t make that person a personal friend who should also be seeing private stuff regarding your friends and family, if you see what I mean.

      I think it’s wise to have the Fan page ready reserved. Why not have a Fan page for your writing now? I would agree it does seem a little presumptuous for the reasons you mention. But you’d do different things there, since you wouldn’t have books to promote yet. That Fan page can be a place where you talk about your writing and provide links to samples for readers to check out. In your writing life, don’t give out the link to your personal facebook page — direct people to the fan page, and direct people you don’t know to your Fan page.

  2. KD James says:

    Okay, I admit it. Stupid questions. Yes, I did read the post.

    You’d think by now I’d have resigned myself to living up to the old adage: “If you can’t be a good example, you’ll have to serve as a horrible warning.”

    Sigh.

    Off to wrestle FB into submission. Or something.

  3. MF Makichen says:

    Me too. . .done and done.

  4. KD James says:

    Thanks, Carolyn. That all makes sense. I’ve created a Fan page. As for directing people… hell, *I* can barely find it again once I leave. Maybe I’ll just send everyone to your page instead. 😉

    I don’t know why I’m finding facebook so difficult to figure out. But I’m now appreciating the simplicity of WordPress even more.

  5. […] This post was mentioned on Twitter by Carolyn Jewel, fredrick alvarado. fredrick alvarado said: Why I hate Facebook « Writer's Diary: I know this because 1) I ignore and despise them myself and 2) I hear everyw… http://bit.ly/cFesFB […]

  6. Oh, so that’s what was going on! Hey, I have a question: I have a facebook for my real life name, and one for my fake author name, but I’ve been thinking of doing a fan page just because, do you think readers are more likely to like a fan page? And think fb friending you is too intrusive? Or do you feel it’s overkill in my case? Look, your hatred of facebook has turned you into facebook answer lady.