Unbeknownst to many, users of Facebook Inc (NASDAQ:FB) have been able to pay $7 since October to promote their posts. With this $7, Facebook promised that your post would reach higher on your friends’ feeds. Immediately, criticism reared up suggesting that this would essentially now make your news feed a rigged game. I, and many others, have failed to notice a difference. This is either because Facebook Inc (NASDAQ:FB) is sort of tricky, or more likely, my friends aren’t bothering to pay for something I would probably read anyways. I’m guessing the latter.
“If your friend is running a marathon for charity and has posted that information publicly, you can help that friend by promoting their post to all of your friends,” a spokesperson told AllFacebook.
“Or if your friend is renting their apartment out and she tells her friends on Facebook, you can share the post with the people you and your friend have in common so that it shows up higher in other news feeds and more people notice it.”
Alright, I can see spending $7 to help my friend promote his charitable deed…..no I just can’t see it. I would sooner just send him $7 for his charity rather than further line the pockets of Mr. Zuckerberg. In fact, I just can’t see myself using this service at all.
This new feature immediately brought up privacy concerns for the ‘holier than thou’ set that seems to always want my protection even when I don’t ask for it. It’s not dissimilar to the ACLU filing an appeal on the part of a prisoner sentenced to death who is ready to die. Leave me alone. Anyone who is concerned about their privacy needs to shut down their Facebook Inc (NASDAQ:FB) account. It’s that simple. There is an implied lack of privacy as you open your life to the world. Besides, this promotion feature that is rolling out this week, does not allow you to change the privacy setting of the post you are promoting. If your friend has set his privacy settings for “friends only,” they will be the only ones who see this post, albeit, at the top of their streams.
This new service is not without restrictions. Only users with less than 5,000 friends or followers are allowed to use this paid promotion feature. Presumably, this is due to the technological limitations of Facebook Inc (NASDAQ:FB). My guess is that Facebook doesn’t want to do advertising/promotion that cheaply. Perhaps both.