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The Evolving Nation of Facebook

With over 600 million members and hundreds joining every hour, if Facebook were a nation, they would be the world’s third largest behind only China and India.  At seven years old, Facebook continues to develop an existence within society.

With that said, “change” is once again occurring at the social media utility as Facebook has released a cleaver and convenient way for users to convert non-personal profiles into business pages all without losing the social presence previously established.  A key difference between the two features is the fact that users can “like” a page while they must “friend” a profile.  Facebook believes that a page is a much better solution for businesses and public figures.

Over the last couple of years, numerous profile and privacy policy changes have occurred at the world’s largest social media network.  Most of these changes have been in relation to personal profiles and not those of businesses. Facebook’s main target with this move appears to be businesses and public figures that have previously setup a profile instead of a page.  In addition to a somewhat different feature set, personal profiles also have a 5,000 friend limit.

A Facebook personal profile created for a business, band, brand, organization, cause or product is a direct violation of the social network’s Statement of Rights and Responsibilities, and could result in the removal of all content and the connections the user has built over time.

Facebook business accounts offer page administrators special features that allow them to better connect with fans and customers while allowing them to manage their social ads and presence on the Internet.  Facebook blocks business accounts from viewing fans’ personal profiles and content and restricts businesses from “friending” personal accounts.

In an effort to “change” its position on such personal profiles while no longer simply removing those that violate its stated policy, Facebook has developed a new business type page.  This change is a welcome move for those who want to move their friends to a page and setup a new profile to maintain a more personal relationship with people they actually know.  It can also help those who should have exercised better judgment when they accepted certain people into their Facebook network.

When a “personal” user converts an account, all friends will migrate with the profile and will become “fans” on the new business page. The profile picture will also migrate, but all other content (photo albums, wall posts, notes, links, etc.) will be lost.  Inside Facebook recommends using the “Download Your Information” tool before converting an account to retain its contents for use elsewhere.

If the personal profile has more than 100 friends, a new page name will have to be chosen.  All login, email and password data will remain the same on the new business page.

Facebook has created a profile migration portal to help users make the change. Users can assign a page to the category (local or place; company, organization or institution; brand or product; artist, band or public figure; entertainment; cause or community) that will best define the page’s content and audience.

Facebook also has a Help Page to guide users through the process of converting personal accounts to business accounts.  It is important to note that profile migrating is irreversible, so be sure you really want to make the switch before completing all the steps.

To learn more about Facebook business accounts and profile migration, visit http://www.facebook.com/pages/create.php?migrate.

To review Bill Lewis’ entire consumer protection series, visit http://www.williamlewis.us.

William E. Lewis Jr. & Associates is a solutions based professional consulting firm specializing in the discriminating individual, business or governmental entity.  To learn more, tune into The Credit Report with Bill Lewis, weekdays at 9 o’clock on AM 1470 WWNN.

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