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4 minute read

Facebook Theatre: A Living Hell

Losing Face(book)

Okay, Facebook has changed the way we operate on a daily basis and I have, along with other professionals, taken advantage of converting my personal profile to a "page" for a company, figuring, "Oh cool, my friends will become my fans!"

Yet it has cut me off my integration—rather than expanded it with my friends. Now I don't seem to be able to write on friends' walls and have even lost "friend news" on my wall. Now when I seek to share any inspirations on my Facebook page, I am sent to my "business dashboard" and have no way other than "cutting and pasting" the URL I wish to share. Wow. Nothing like being sent back four years in technology Facebook.

From Mashable to Trashable

A recent post on Mashable had this so well documented, I wanted to pass this along to anyone considering making the same mistake and living through this hell.

Maybe, I'll be lucky enough to get the same courtesy from Facebook as Christina Warren did. Facebook, are you listening?

Christina wrote it so well, here is the excerpt I am sharing with my Fast Company readers and followers so you don't make the same hellish mistake (and if Facebook will help me like they did Christina, I'll tell the world as well).

Here is the great intro that sets the stage:

"Users who want to migrate from a traditional Facebook Profile to a Facebook Page might want to think twice, or even thrice, before making the leap. The new tool is intended to help brands, local business, organizations or public figures create a new Facebook page while still bringing their friends (ie, fans) along with them.
"It's great that Facebook is offering users this tool, but those interested in the migration should proceed with extreme caution. I unintentionally committed Facebook suicide earlier this afternoon when I participated in the process myself. What I had hoped would be a way for me to create a fan page and then re-establish a new personal account has instead turned into a bit of a technical, and social media-induced nightmare."

 

I could only compare this to what it must be like to visit Charlie Sheen's mind and tracking his logic. But really, why would Facebook mess with their brand (which is only a portal to one's friends and colleagues)? Christine further elaborated on getting caught in this labyrinthine hell hole.

"I understood that I would lose photos, wall posts and messages. What I didn't anticipate was the loss of my username (a name I had to fight to get in the great Facebook Username Race of 2009) and that any applications associated with my account (including games) would now have major issues working. "The real trouble, however, came when I attempted to re-create a personal profile page."

Look Facebook, if you're going to introduce something to businesses that exist to earn money and not "experience new things"—then it would great to provide a video that explained this migration in simple terms so the implications were totally clear.

Christine mentioned three areas I thought would be clear for anyone using Facebook so they could save face and not dip their toe into this hell hole of lava-infused misery.

"The first problem was that I could not longer associate myself with any networks or e-mail addresses in use by the other account. That meant I couldn't show that I work at Mashable and I couldn't add my cell phone to my new profile. Removing those e-mails and networks from the Business Account was that workaround, but it creates more of a problem in maintaining separate pages.
"Second, and this is the real issue in my case, I can't even send friend requests to half of my friend or even some family members because Facebook thinks that I'm spamming people I don't actually know. I can't do anything to convince them that I do know said individuals and instead will have to harangue my friends and family to add the new me as a friend.
"Third, even though I can switch between acting as the Christina Warren that is my personal profile and the Christina Warren that is a fan, because all of my social accounts are linked to a now defunct personal account, I have to reset every tool I have used that integrates with Facebook. I was under the impression that as a Page, I could still like a share content to that page's feed without having a problem. Not only can I not do that, if I want to like or share content on my personal account, I need to be logged into a totally different setup."

Don't Try This at Home

If LinkedIn did this, businesses would stone the company into not being idiotic. LinkedIn has been raising their game a LOT these days, especially with their LinkedIn Today page which I love and use. Gives me a great snapshot before my day starts.

Now, I am—in my Facebook world—back in my teens when we moved to a new neighborhood, feeling disconnected, not being sure who is who and most of all, wondering who I am and how I get anyone to notice, or care.

To anyone at facebook reading this, this is hell.

Recipient of over 320 national and international design and branding recognitions and awards, David Brier is an award-winning brand identity designer, author, and branding expert. His firm's work has won the admiration of peers and organizations but has, more importantly, helped clients jump-start their brands in new and innovative ways, even (and especially) when they've failed in previous brand makeovers. Most recently, David's celebrated work for Botanical Bakery was selected for the 2010 Communication Arts Design Annual and will be featured in "The Big Book of Packaging."

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