Your page is your ticket to Facebook advertising because without it, you can’t advertise on Facebook. That’s why it’s especially important to adhere to Facebook’s latest page authorization requirements. Last week, the social media company announced that pages with large US audiences are now required to undergo new page publishing authorization. Additionally, the company is rolling out a feature that shows pages’ primary country location and page-merge information.
“Our goal is to prevent organizations and individuals from creating accounts that mislead people about who they are or what they’re doing,” Facebook said in its article about the updates. “These updates are part of our continued efforts to increase authenticity and transparency of Pages on our platform.”
A fake Facebook page can do damage if it has a large US audience. Facebook learned that the hard way. In 2016, the company faced such a debacle when Russian troll accounts delivered politically divisive ads during the last US Presidential Election. The malicious activity stoked discord between people from two sides of the political spectrum, going so far as to cause real-world effects, such as organizing fake protests in US soil that people, unaware that the event was created by a fake page from Russia, attended. The activity went unnoticed until much later, by which time the damage had already been done. Facebook can’t be blamed for taking extra precautions to prevent such a scandal from happening again.
The new authorization process will make it more challenging for people to create fake Facebook pages. If you have a large US audience and wish to continue posting on your page, you will need to complete Facebook’s new authorization process. If Facebook requires you to complete the authorization process, you will receive a notice at the top of your News Feed. The process only takes a few minutes, requiring you to complete two-factor authentication and to confirm your primary country location.
What happens if you fail to complete the authorization process? According to Facebook, you will be unable to publish any posts from your page. If you continue to disregard Facebook’s new authorization process, the company will delete your page or your account. If you’re required to complete the process, do so immediately to continue posting and advertising on the platform. It’s better safe than sorry.
More Page Information
Facebook wants users to experience full transparency on its platform. To do that, pages must have pertinent information easily available for users about the businesses they represent. From now on, in the Info and Ads section of every page, users will be able to see information about any page mergers under the Page History section. The page merger information lets users know whether a page is or was at any point merged with another page. This information ensures users know the relationship of one page with another. As a result, fake accounts appearing as a completely new page while sharing information identical to its other, similar page will be unable to hide it.
Additionally, Facebook is adding a new tab called People Who Manage This Page that will provide information about primary country locations from where you manage your page. Users didn’t know that the ads from the fake accounts were coming from Russia when they viewed them. Only Facebook knew that information. Now, everyone will be able to see that information so they know which country the ads and posts originated. The new tab will initially appear on pages with sizeable US audiences. You should expect to see it on all pages sometime in the future.
Expanding to Instagram
If you also have an Instagram account for your business, expect similar features in the coming weeks, particularly if your account has a large US following.
Even though Instagram wasn’t used maliciously during the US election and even though Instagram maintains a pristine reputation, you can understand why the company would be cautious, implementing similar updates to both platforms. With Instagram’s growing popularity, it could easily fall into the same sense of complacency that Facebook did. The company clearly recognizes this possibility and does what it can to be consistent in its measures for both Facebook and Instagram.
As long as you follow Facebook’s rules, your Facebook pages will remain untouched. Facebook and Instagram are still two of the most popular social media platforms. Don’t give up on them simply because Facebook enforced a few more ordinances to keep the platform an honest and transparent space, such as introducing new restrictions for ads promoting addiction treatment centers and bail bonds and signing a legal agreement that prevents the exclusion of protected groups in housing ads (e.g. ethnic and religious minorities, immigrants, etc.).
Facebook users demand honesty and transparency. If given what they want, they will remain active users on the company’s platform—that bodes well for your business.