The background:In May, Facebook enabled users to tag brands in photos, just like they tag friends. The photos then show up on a brand's Facebook page. This makes a lot of sense for companies, as they strive to be part of consumers' lives, but...
The experiment:What happens when users post and tag unflattering photos of products? We did just that, then watched and waited for the untagging.
The result: Some companies untagged immediately. Others either didn't notice our photos, or didn't care. Coke acted the fastest—within an hour. "If someone were to tag you in a photo and you didn't like the shirt you're wearing, you'd untag. That's more or less the policy we have for Coke on Facebook," says Ashley Brown, Coca-Cola's director of digital communications and social media.
A version of this article appeared in the September 2011 issue of Fast Company magazine.