When Facebook began to struggle after going public this past May, they launched a desperate crusade for revenue that has ultimately placed the burden on users by severely limiting your ability to reach your friends unless you pay a premium.
Facebook quietly introduced a new “Promoted Posts” feature that forces you to pay money to reach upwards of 80% of your friends and fans, effectively censoring you by limiting the prominence of your posts if you pay nothing. Users are asked to pay around $7.00 to have posts appear to friends and fans as they once did, and larger pages like ours, with roughly 2 million fans, are required to pay a jaw-dropping $4,000 per post to reach our full audience.
If Facebook keeps this up, your timeline may soon be dominated by only major corporations willing to spend the cash. Sign our petition calling on Facebook to keep the social network truly free and change their Pay-to-Promote policy that unfairly limits users speech.
The path Facebook is on has only one logical conclusion; one that would eliminate any future potential for using Facebook as a global platform for massive mobilization and communication.
Facebook played an important role in keeping the Tunisian revolution alive but would the social network have played such an essential role if protesters had been forced to pay $7.00 every time they wanted to a status update to be seen by all of their friends?
The social network built its reputation — and massive user base — on the promise of being a free and open platform for people to share stories and experiences with one another. Their FAQ section insists they are and always will be “free to use,” but charging people a premium to reach more than 20% of their friends and fans seriously calls that claim into question.
As a truly free service, Facebook’s potential as a medium of mass communication was apparent in its role in the Tunisian revolution and other Arab Spring movements. But now that your speech is defined and restricted by the amount of money you’re willing and able to pay, you can bet you won’t see another Facebook Revolution anytime soon.
With your support we’ll push back on Facebook’s new policy and fight to preserve the social network as a truly free service.
h/t Dangerous Minds for the image