Tuesday, February 8, 2011
An Open Letter To Facebook
This is an open letter to you and some ideas on how you can make this a much better site and keep your users happy and safe.
First lets start with the random disabling of users accounts without notification or justification. You really have got to stop the disabling of peoples accounts without giving them any reason why. People spend alot of time and money on your site and for you to do this is just wrong.
Yes this is your site and yes you do make the rules BUT we are the ones that help support your investors and advertisers. We are the ones that help bring revenues to you and your company. We are the ones that have made you as popular and profitable as you are.
What we ask is that you communicate better with us and let us communicate with you. You ask us to search the help center for answers to our questions but the help center is so unorganized and quite frankly you dont answer the questions you let other members try to answer them for us which does us no good when we really need an answer.
You need to give us real reasons why accounts are being disabled. Just tell us what we did wrong so we know not to do that again and we can get that out to our friends so they dont make the same mistakes.You are just so secretive with things and like I said your communications skills with your users is horrible.
Which brings me to our next topic CUSTOMER SERVICE. There is none. Ok, there is email but you never tell us how to contact you or what department to send them to we have to rely on each other to find where to send things.
You really to make it so we can get phone support. The social games that fund you do it, why cant you ? Oh wait your answer is because you are an internet company you say you do things through email. But wait didn't your CEO say email is dead.
Look it may be an added expense but it is worth the investment because it keeps your customers happy. Also being how you are now forcing us and all the applications to use Facebook Credits if we need to buy something on Facebook you really need it so we can get answers fast and avoid and fraud issues. Our banks require us to immediately contact them when we detect fraud or they will do nothing to help us. We cant contact you because you have to phone in support so are you going to reimburse us for any fraudulent charges made due to hackers. NO, we have to do it without support from you and when we contact our banks and PayPal to stop payments on those charges you cut us off and dont let us use Facebook credits again.
I know your answer is to email you with all questions, OK where do you want us to contact you . Why not put out a list of all the emails of the various department so then we know exactly where to send thing to get prompt service so we dont bog down your email servers with random emails to departments that cant help us.
Here is an example of a contact page for you :
Thank you for using Facebook. We know from time to time you may need to get in touch with us and while we dont offer telephone support, as we are an internet company, we have put together a handy list of emails you can use to contact us. We do value your thoughts and feedback, as you are very special to us and are honored to have you as part of the Facebook family.
Please, in most cases, give us 24 to 72 hours to respond to your issues or questions. In some cases it may be sooner. Please remember there are 600 million of you and only a few of us so please be patient but be assured we will respond back as soon as humanly possible.
Thank you for understanding,
The Facebook Team
Customer Service : email@example.com
Legal Dept. : firstname.lastname@example.org
Facebook Credits: email@example.com
Account Issues: firstname.lastname@example.org
Bugs & Glitches: email@example.com
Disabled Account: firstname.lastname@example.org
Cyber Bullying : email@example.com
Press : firstname.lastname@example.org
Advertising : email@example.com
General Questions: firstname.lastname@example.org
Feedback & Suggestions : email@example.com
Facebook Security: firstname.lastname@example.org
156 University Ave
Palo Alto, CA 94301
650-543-4811 (Interview Request Line)
Fax #: 650-543-4801
Not very hard to do was it. It shows you care and are interested in helping us. A very simple solution.
Now finally lets get to privacy issues. As you know this is a very touchy subject amongst the users and various governments and activist groups around the world.
It is a real shame you feel the need to make everything opt out in this world today. Exposing your users info to the world for all to see. Yes we can change things or at least the ones who are computer and site savvy can very easily. What about the rest of them, you dont make this information easy for them to find. They need to rely on other people to tell them how to do things.
Here is a solution to this part make it all opt in and then send out a blast to everyones profile with what changes are available and a how to guide on them. Simple solution once again. You can also make it so your main Facebook pages ( Security, Safety and main Facebook page. Then for page owners the Pages ) are mandatory pages all belong to and make all update go right to their profiles so they see them.
You do have great info on these pages for the users of your site let them know it exists.
Now on to 3rd party apps privacy. This is where you seem to be more of a data collection site than a Social Network.
You give them all the information they ask for with no questions asked on why they want it or need it. You also have to real protections on what they do with all that valuable information. No real safeguards to protect your users information and now you want to give them our address & mobile phone number in the future. Yes I know you stopped that for now while you figure out another way to do it for them.
Here is how everyone of your users, governments and activist groups will be happy. When a 3rd party application comes on Facebook and they want users to use the application the only information they get is the users name, uid, if they are a male or female and age. Thats it !!! if we want to share anymore information with them we can be asked from the application directly and decide what we want to share. Once again real simple solution.
We are not being paid to help them market their applications so why should they have access to our personal information. Yes I know you make money on these 3rd party applications and alot of it. But you really need to protect the users let us decide what we want to share and what we dont want to share.
There are to many rogue applications out there that put us users at risk everyday all over the internet not just here. You also dont have enough safeguard in place to protect our information and that has been proven. Look at the dating site Lovelyfaces.com who stole 1 million Facebook profiles and used all the information for their site. It gives you a black eye and once again proves you cant protect us from them.
I will be honest with you Facebook, you have a great site and if you work more closely with some of us users that utilize the site more than your engineers and employees you can get some really great feedback on how this site site can be much better and safer for all.
Please try and listen to some of these ideas as these are things alot of your users have issue with and would like to see implemented. Yes I could keep going on but lets try to work on these things first and go from there.