What the Zuck? Facebook Page admin bombshell causes havoc

FacebookWe all know how much of an outcry there is every time the Facebook developers get it into their developer heads that the platform needs a change. Usually I’m rather *meh* about any of the new features, I quietly adopt them, get used to them and move on until the next time a change comes round.

This time, I’m sitting in my office flabbergasted, after getting a call from my team telling me that the Facebook pages we run for our clients has an issue (to say the least): No longer can we as a brand comment on anything our fans say due to the new privacy settings. It’s official, it’s true and I’m pulling my hair out.

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Facebook wanted to give users the power and they have, but in the process they’ve basically screwed the brands. So unless every fan of your Facebook page agrees to change his or her settings, they can comment and complain and query until they’re blue in the face – your brand will not be able to answer them.

Twitter and Facebook are in a frenzy this morning. What will brands do? Well, I know what we did for our accounts. We immediately put up a status asking our fans to pretty please change their settings and then gave them instructions how.

So now, for your reading pleasure, here are the instructions to changing privacy settings in order to allow brands to comment on your comments:

  • Click Account Drop Down box at the top right of your page
  • Select “Privacy Settings”
  • Select “Customise Settings”
  • Go to “Things Others Share” and under “Can Comment on Posts” select “Everyone” from the drop down box

Right. Now that’s sorted, what about the fact that Facebook now allows a page administrator to reply to comments, but only under their own profile and not the page? Well, honestly, I’m stumped on this one.

I hope that Facebook will reconsider, but in the meantime while typing this I’m holding my breath trying to get answers. If I turn blue, just know I will come back and haunt Facebook’s HQ.

Another administrator shaking her head in disbelief was Suzanne Stokes, Brand manager of M-WEB Connect, who writes:

“The only way around responding to user comments on your fan page without it coming from your personal profile, it to create a fake profile like “Jeremy at Memeburn” – fake as in not your real name.

This fake profile thing is 100% against facebook rules.

*sigh* they really have left us in a bind.”

Note to all administrators: A Twitter hashtag #FBPageFail has begun to try collect any data around this, as everyone is just grasping at straws right now, trying to find out how this is going to be resolved.

UPDATE: Facebook UK has acknowledged the issue and word on the street is that as soon as our friends in America are awake tomorrow the bug will be fixed. We’ll let you know as soon as we hear anything more.

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