Editors Note: This was written by Steven’s website in January, a couple months before the scandals hit Facebook.
By Steven Clickford
On January 15th, Facebook did a major change that was announced last year to deemphasize Facebook pages and more content from your friends and family on your News Feed. For anyone who operates Facebook “pages” (the ones where you have to “Like” and/or “Follow”) had been screwed over. Especially when Facebook didn’t give Page Admins directions on getting their content to be top priority.
While Facebook Pages may mean little to some, it may be worth to others.
“Facebook pages” ofter are blurred between the lines of a fully public profile or a page where it’s not for “friends” and is used for business (meaning you can use the metrics and convoluted metering system for hits, likes, reax, etc.) For the purposes of the article, “profiles” are not “Pages” and the former is a befriend system while the latter is a “Like” and “Follow” system.
Nearly nine years ago, this was introduced for celebrities, ranging from A to C-list, to small businesses to “brands” and enterprises. Prior to there was no real way for a business to be on Facebook. In fact smaller towns and communities who lived on business on a seven-digit telephone number, that never got a website, and some refused to go on the email way, would jump into the 21st Century using Facebook pages.
If you are a page administrator to a business or a brand or use Pages for your own branding, you got screwed on January 15th.
Controversy on Facebook’s News Feed goes as far back as when Facebook became open for non university users. The reason why Facebook deemphasized Facebook pages on the News Feed may had something to do with a potential conflict in the 2016 Election, or just simply experimenting on their users. To me this is highly unethical.
And I do not want to blame the user, while some snooty Computer Scientist would probably do. Sure the writing was on the wall (no pun) and it was announced during Facebook’s developers conference last year, but small business owners and content creators ranging from old tech vlogs to cosplay models have no time to be reading on the corporate blog or page admin relations and stuff like that to be educated. For them this is a slap on the face.
For me I think out of the last eleven years I’ve been on and off Facebook, I’ve spent many as a page admin for various things. Part of it I felt at one point in my life I didn’t have a face for Facebook and I still struggle with a weak social network in real life.
I do not think this will hurt Facebook’s bottom line, the stock may not hit a bump for a few more quarters if revenues from the pages business starts to crumble. While Facebook has admitted that their fears came true of a unruly society wether it’s in the “real world” or packet-based world, I would say “guns don’t kill, people with guns do”, or fatty foods don’t kill you, the person whose eating them do. Facebook users make Facebook unattractive for many. The people on social media who are exploiting the negativity should be blamed. Where is the computer scientists when you need them to pass the buck?
I do wonder if FAANG (Facebook, Apple, Amazon, Netflix and Google) are going to be the next Railroads of the New Millennium. The Railroad industry peaked in the early 1900s or a number of reasons, disruptions in technology and plain ol stupidity. The Tech Crash of 2000 was no less than people wanting to get rich quick, and Facebook can be more valuable, if they respect our privacy if people are willing to pay for value added services to ensure your privacy because storing stuff on the Internet doesn’t come free and it isn’t created like water.
These companies are large in power and market cap so therefore, they can do whatever the hell they want. Digital companies do not play by the traditional norms of industrial companies. That’s another discussion for another day, however I would be very careful of putting capital in FAANG only because stupidity is their true disruptor.