Wednesday, August 11, 2010

Facebook again

I mentioned my friend in a previous post who had a temporary ban on making friends. (Let's call him John since it seems stupid to keep saying "my friend" over and over. Well he got it again. This time FB gave him a link to a page that stated the following:

If your account is blocked from adding friends, it is because Facebook...
If your account is blocked from adding friends, it is because Facebook’s security system detected either that your friend requests were being ignored at a high rate or volume, or that you were sending friend requests too quickly. Unwanted contact with strangers is not allowed on Facebook because it makes other people feel unsafe.
  • A temporary block will last anywhere from a few hours to a few days.
  • We cannot lift this block for any reason, so please be patient and refrain from using this feature for a few days while waiting for this block to be removed.
  • Attempting to send messages while you are blocked can extend the block.

Please review the guidelines below to prevent your personal account from being disabled in the future:
  • Do not send unwanted messages or friend requests to people you don’t know in the real world.
  • Do not use the site for dating or business purposes.
  • Do not send messages or friend requests to strangers for the purpose of gaining an advantage in an application.

Unfortunately, Facebook cannot provide any specifics on the rate limits that are enforced. When you are allowed to send friend requests again, be sure that you slow down and send requests and only to people you know. Further misuse of site features may result in more blocks or your account being permanently disabled.

Two things about this had me laughing. (Which John did not appreciate.) I was laughing at the stupidity of FB though, not John. Really. :)

First was the "Do not send messages or friend requests to strangers blah blah blah application." Read application as games. My friend plays a LOT of games. Hell, I did the make friends for games on FB thing when I first joined FB.

The way the games are set up you HAVE to if you want to get ahead in the games. You ability to advance in most of the games depends on how many friends you have playing it with you. Look at Mafia Wars. If you don't have a lot of people in your gang, let alone the maximum of 500, you are just going to keep getting slaughtered by others. Some of the quests in games count on you requesting, and getting, new friends.

Then you have the second thing, which kind of goes along with the first. If you look on the right hand side of your screen you will see "People You May Know". This is Facebook's way of RECOMMENDING friends to you. They take people that you and those already your friend know and advise you of their friends that you may know. I have seen people pop up on mine that don't even list a friend of mine as knowing them.

What pisses John off is that even though he can't make any new friends for a period of time, that FB can't seem to tell him, these friend suggestions keep popping up. If they don't want you contacting people you don't, or may not know, stop making suggestions.

I agree with him that Facebook is sending out mixed messages and punishing people for following them. It is never fun to be punished for something the punisher seems to be encouraging you to do. Nor is it fun to be told you are being punished but we can't tell you for how long. Mind you I don't expect much else from FB. They really need to start cleaning their act up. People do have other options and if they keep pissing people off they may find them exercising those options.

I enjoy playing computer games and FB has some fun ones. However, I always find that I stop playing most of them because they are dependent on having friends playing.

Facebook ... I have something to say ... in the immortal words ... of John Stewart ... either stop sending mixed messages .... or ... GO FUCK YOURSELVES.

So, right there FB is setting you up for a getting in trouble.

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