Facebook Fuckery

Facebook has decided to enforce their real name policy and has suspended my author account.

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In a giant, idiot move, they have also suspended Kate Aaron’s account for not using her real name. (Which, dude, that is her real name.)

I am likely not going to comply with their demands in order to reinstate my author account. Many people use pen/stage/alternate/nick names for a variety of reasons. The teacher who enjoys reading erotica but doesn’t need her students looking at her goodreads reviews. The prosecutor who has put dangerous people behind bars. The drag queen who could lose her job or be evicted legally in 29 states in our lovely country.

The author of m/m who has been fired once before for her writing.

One of the safety tips we’ve heard from the inception of the Internet is don’t give strangers your real name.

Facebook doesn’t get to dictate my safety. They don’t get to force me to risk another job (my employer probably wouldn’t fire me this time, but I work in a state where they legally could) in order to continue using their site for my promotions.

Facebook doesn’t get to force me to tell more information than I am comfortable giving because I’ve chosen a public career and am not okay being that searchable. The phone company never forced people to be listed in the phone book just to have a phone number. We could choose to be unlisted for our own safety.

So I will not be returning to Facebook. To those who have followed me there, my contact page has the other places I can be found. I will be exploring Google + as an alternative and will be talking with a marketing friend about setting up a newsletter. My blogging needs to pick up. I’m in the thick of getting Consent to edits so it might be the weekend before I can get G+ set up. I will keep you all posted on where I end up.

Facebook lost a user today. I’m small potatoes to them. But I’m done. That is not how you treat your users who are doing nothing wrong. They suggest I set up a fan page, but unless I pay them money, they will suppress my fan page. Also, I have a fan page. I can’t fucking log into it without giving you my real name, asshole Facebook.

And don’t think I haven’t noticed it’s drag queens and other LGBT affiliated people who are getting threatened.

#byefelicia

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42 thoughts on “Facebook Fuckery

  1. I hate Facebook more and more every day. This is a ridiculous policy that does nothing for anyone’s safely or security. And how the hell do they even know if you’re using your real name or not?! Argh!

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  2. Well said, AJ. And what are they tied into the SSA to prove “legal” names? Do we have to provide a finger print and a hair sample now? Thank you, no. They’ve surpassed “safety” and have landed squarely in “greedy.” I hope the mass exodus commences.

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  3. I kind of noticed a trend in the users being targeted as well. When I saw both you & Kate get hit the same day it cemented my suspicions. FB sucks. I don’t use my last name because my husband would fight me for custody of our son if he found out how liberal I am and that I read, edit & review gay fiction. If I am asked by FB to give my whole name, I will leave also. Until then, I’ll see you & Kate on twitter & G+. I have a feeling FB will reverse its position when it loses bunches of users to G+, its mortal enemy, lol.

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  4. OK, I really don’t understand this. There are tons of authors & really big celebrities on Facebook. Many, many of them are using pseudonyms. I mean, no way Facebook thinks Lady Gaga is anyone’s legal name. I thought what you have to do is create a Facebook profile under your real name, but then a Facebook page for your author profile? Something about registering as a public figure? And supposedly no one can see the connection, due to privacy settings? I don’t do Facebook myself because of the requirement to use my real name, but this has been my understanding . . .

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      • And that’s the whole point of this progrom, isn’t it? To screw money out of us. I *wish* I’d kept the URL of an article I saw that analysed book sales against FB promotions and paid-for advertising. It boiled down to it being just as effective a marketing tool for writers as setting fire to their money and waving the burning notes in the air.

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  5. I am one of the few who have never & will never sign up for Facebook (or really any social networking site), and this negative situation just reinforces that. I have not felt safe with putting my private info out there like that, especially under someone else’s control. So I follow my favs on their websites and through e-mail instead. I’m here and will remain here for and with you, as I’m sure is true of all of your fans. I also want to say that with all that has been happening to you and around you lately, it can sometimes feel like the cosmos is aligned against you – just keep being you and doing what you do, the rest will follow.

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  6. That is so bizarre. How do they know it’s not your ‘real’ name. What is a ‘real’ name, anyway? I’ve had so many names in my life, only one of which is on my birth certificate.

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  7. Pingback: Oh hot damn…Facebook deleted an author’s account. | The Sappy Noypi

  8. There obviously aren’t any mathematicians working at FB. They haven’t heard about exponential growth. They seem to think they can ban some (apparently carefully selected) authors and artists without consequence. They forget those people have friends and followers, who have friends and followers, who have… It won’t take a lot of bans before they will see and feel a loss in users (and therefore money).

    As for me, I’ll follow where my friends go. So I will find you here, in my inbox on Twitter and on G+ and Tumbler (if I ever figure out how to navigate my way around those sites). I’ve just realized FB could ban me from using both my accounts should they want to. This one uses one of my legal first names and an adapted surname. The other one uses the only name I’ve ever been called with my married surname. On my passport it gives my legal name (which nobody has ever used when talking to or about me) and my maiden-name. I guess I don’t really exist at all.

    It sucks. And it comes at the worst possible time for both you and Kate as far as new releases are concerned. I won’t be alone in offering my blogs and any online accounts in support when the time is here. You know where to find me. I guess it’s up to us now to prove to FB that there is (online) life without them. They’re counting on us being desperate enough to stay with them to jump through whatever hoops they choose to put in front of us. They’ll find out soon enough they’re wrong.

    I’m so glad at least you two are together ❤

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    • Thanks, Helena. And yeah, Kate realized last night that 19 months of our relationship, including the messages where I told her I’m in love with her, are gone. The longer this goes on, the more upset I’m getting.

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      • I’m so upset over this. I realized last night too that the chats I’ve had with now-exiled authors have simply vanished as if they never happened. Blogs and Twitter are fine, but I’ll miss the private interaction. I don’t always want my conversations ‘out there’.

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      • That not only breaks my heart but infuriates me too. Those were private discussions between the two of you. Nothing public about them at all. They are YOURS and nothing to do with FB. They shouldn’t have the right to do that.

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  9. Helena, that was my thought, as well. Putting aside the baldly bullshit nature of all of this, it makes no sense to enact an exclusionary policy if you’re trying to grow your business.

    AJ, we’ll help get the word spread and definitely do the newsletter.
    Also, if you’re up for it, forming a group on GR helps, as well.

    ~AD

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  10. I’m now seriously considering setting up a FB group called something like ‘Authors threatened with extinction supporting each other’. If someone is forced to leave the others could carry messages, links and other relevant information to FB.

    There has to be a way to beat them at their own game.

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    • Kate is trying to get them to reinstate her. I’m not giving them my real name, so unless they back off their policy, I won’t be back there. They’re meeting with the drag queens sometime soon. We’ll see what happens there.

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      • I can’t blame you. You shouldn’t have to give them your real name. If they insist I do that I’ll be gone too. Not that I have an issue with people knowing my official name is Maria Helena Siewe (married to Kennedy D.) but joining FB under that name would be useless. Nobody, including myself, would recognize it.

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  11. I use my real life account for everything & if my family doesn’t like it then that is their problem not mine. I’m sorry this has happened. I will support you anyway i can!

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  12. What’s happened to you and Kate, what you’ve lost of memories and photos etc, is burning me. I’ve always disliked FB. Now I hate it. Have added you to my Google+ circle, anyway. At least Google came to its senses over the real name malarky.

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    • Kate is back on FB under Katrina (still not real) and I am considering going back just long enough to grab documents and chats and friends’ contact info. Otherwise, I’m done.

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  13. Wow what a mess! Never was and never will be on FB or any other social network, I just don’t need it! So I’ll stick with you via your blog and hope that you and Kate will get back your very personal conversations!

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  14. So sorry for you and Kate! At least I’m subscribed to this blog 🙂 and I follow you on Twitter and GR (when it’s relevant).

    I decided, when I had time to try these things, that I would keep my birth name (together with my married name, although I’m divorced) b/c I’m small fry and no-one is really interested in me. i also made the decision to be careful in what I said/wrote 🙂 But I was VERY well aware that many authors of M/M Romance (which I read in droves!!) would use their author-names, rather than their ‘real’ names – and I totally understand WHY 🙂

    I truly understand the need for anonimity and I have no problem with that! Not sure about Google + b/c I’m old and decrepit and have little patience (now) for convoluted thingies 🙂

    **Hugs** and much ❤

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  15. I think FB is about to sink from its own weight. So many posts get lost, overlooked, or ignored (God, I hate cute cats, dogs and babies), that’s it becoming even more of a giant time suck to wade through the many posts that are random noise to arrive at the few I want to look at.

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  16. Seems to me someone needs to go postal on fb and go threw and report EVERYONE, especally the ones that have enitials or clear nock-names and then see how fb deals when the hetrosexual set of them has to deal with it.

    Sorry this has happened to you.

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