Man, the hits keep on coming!
Just over a month ago I left my personal Facebook page behind. I cannot tell you how freeing that has been and how that has radically changed my perspective about social networking, social media, and it’s impact and effect on community and relationships as well as human-computer interaction. Heck, I could probably write a book about it.
But, I kept the TentBlogger Fan Page up thinking that I’d continue using that (even though I wasn’t really engaging heavily there at all). I knew that the Fan Page was incredibly weak in terms of engagement and the metrics surrounding the traffic numbers have been historically paltry.
Well, no !@#$ sherlock. What I had thought was just a result of the broken medium turns out to be an actual “feature” planned by Facebook.
You see, the fact is that Facebook limits the distribution of your content on your fan page unless you pay them money to distribute it fully to your fans:
It’s no conspiracy. Facebook acknowledged it as recently as last week: messages now reach, on average, just 15 percent of an account’s fans. In a wonderful coincidence, Facebook has rolled out a solution for this problem: Pay them for better access.
As their advertising head, Gokul Rajaram, explained, if you want to speak to the other 80 to 85 percent of people who signed up to hear from you, “sponsoring posts is important.”
In other words, through “Sponsored Stories,” brands, agencies and artists are now charged to reach their own fans—the whole reason for having a page—because those pages have suddenly stopped working.
This is a clear conflict of interest. The worse the platform performs, the more advertisers need to use Sponsored Stories. In a way, it means that Facebook is broken, on purpose, in order to extract more money from users. In the case of Sponsored Stories, it has meant raking in nearly $1M a day.
This… is… ridiculous.
As a result, this has made my decision to shut down the TentBlogger Fan Page a very easy one. From this moment going further I will no longer be updating that page and giving Facebook any more of my attention via our great community here.
It doesn’t matter if I’ve got over 1k fans there since only a fraction of them get the updates and I don’t mind the loss of a once-supposed signal for social proof.
We’ll continue to build the community here, just like we started a few years back. Facebook, you’re evil.