Facebook Community Pages
Further to my post about Facebook unilaterally changing some Facebook business pages into community pages, I got an email from Trish about her Facebook page who was unable to reverse the change – even with our instructions.
Fortunately, we were able to give her some Facebook forms which allowed her to report what had happened and a few weeks later, her Page was mysteriously returned to her without warning. There was no notification from Facebook, she just logged in and it was back as a Business Page.
I wanted to find out a bit more about these rather unusual creations, but when I searched for items which I felt should be community pages, they didn’t appear as a choice and there was no ‘Community Page’ option – only People, Places, Pages.
What distinguishes a Facebook Community Page from Business Pages and Groups
Checking on the main Facebook help site, I learned that these are built around topics, causes or experiences. And whereas official pages are maintained by authorised representatives of a business, brand, celebrity, or organisation, who can create and share content about the entities that they represent, this is not the case with Community Pages.
Most importantly, these cannot trigger newsfeed stories.
But, not so fast! It would seem that there are two types of Community Pages. The ones that Facebook creates based on user interests listed in their personal profiles. And those that can be created by individuals around interests. For the latter, these do appear in newsfeeds and individuals can post status updates on them. Sadly, Facebook does not cover these in their Help pages.
These Passion Pages can be created by individuals from the Cause or Community option given when you first create a Facebook Page.
But Mari Smith does give more information about them in a post from back in 2010 here.
Many community pages display Wikipedia articles about their topics, as well as related posts from other people on Facebook in real time. Community pages are meant to be the best collection of shared knowledge on topics that interest you. Where available, they show Wikipedia content for the relevant topic, which Facebook has licensed under the creative commons license.
However, if Facebook cannot locate the right article from Wikipedia, they might be asking for help from the community. As a result, you may see messaging on these community pages inviting you to make these more useful and interesting by signing up to contribute in the future or by suggesting a Wikipedia article.
Although users can link to a Community Page from their personal wall and have their post appear there, you cannot actually add your own pictures or edit information on these pages.
Facebook Groups allow you to communicate directly with other people on Facebook about a specific subject. Anyone can create and admin a group.
So why would you want to like or link to a Community Page from your Facebook profile?
You “like” these pages to connect with them and adding community pages to your personal timeline can allow you to see what people are saying about stuff that matters to you — whether that’s a hobby or a species that you own as a pet or a political movement, as well as letting your friends know more about you by clicking on your interests.
Some topics feature content from Wikipedia to help you learn more about things you find interesting in a more informative way, rather than just showing a bullet pointed list of your interests without further enlightenment.
Making unauthorised duplicate pages into community pages
I have seen recently a couple of pages for national newspapers that were listed as ‘Interest’, complete with a Wikipedia page showing as the main info so it was interesting to find this recent update from All Facebook about a new tool that helps to locate duplicate pages.
Facebook wants celebrities and other national organisations and entities to have their own authorised pages. However, unlike Twitter, they have not gone down the verification route and so a whole raft of unauthorised pages has been spawned.
Local businesses and duplicate pages
This is actually particularly noticeable for local restaurants who can have three or four different pages with people checking in at all of them. It’s usually a case that someone has tried to check in, not been able to find the page for some reason and just created one.
The new tool allows certain Pages to identify all the duplicates and have them designated as community pages which link back to the official site. But for those page owners who cannot see the new tool in their dashboard, it is also possible to use Facebook’s main search bar to locate related pages. Should they find duplicate pages that are not properly designated as community pages, they can report them directly by clicking the gear icon beneath the page’s cover photo and clicking “report page.” This leads to a pop up where users can indicate the official page.
For those local restaurant owners, it’s not much help really because they want those check ins and likes on their official page so it would be much better to have a claim and merge option rather than this rather peculiar solution.
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