An Open Letter to Facebook from a Lowly Blogger
I am just a lowly blogger, sharing my knowledge and creativity with the rest of the internet in hopes of making the world a better place.
I don't have a staff. My editor is my cat. My blogging hours are weekends and weeknights 7 p.m.-2 a.m. My salary is the few dollars I get from advertising placement, enough to by a few extra Christmas presents a the end of the year. But that's not why I do this. My real salary is the reward of connecting and sharing with others-with the larger community I built around myself with similar interests and joys. I have had some pretty emotional moments, like inspiring a mother to make a container pond so her blind daughter could hear the sound of water on her deck. Or coaching a young lady around baking her first pasta casserole for her guests. These were real people that found me on my Facebook page and started a virtual relationship with me. Through my blog's Facebook page, I could reach further and get to know more people with similar interests. After all, wasn't that the whole point of having a Facebook page? I could really make an impact in other people's lives. That's the real reward of having an active blog that I work so hard on. Creating a rich and active community of sharing and connecting. Sadly, you continue to make it more and more difficult for content developers like me to do that. You are making the internet a less richer place-simple because you are focusing on the content developers that are RICHER, meaning they have money to spend.
Not so long ago, we bloggers worked hard on trying to build likes for our pages. Many people (and companies) even bought likes. Now, you are making it so page owners have to pay again just to talk to those same people-thanks to your crazy new algorithm. We have built communities around ourselves that you are now making virtually impossible to connect with unless we pay for it. I am not a large corporation. I don't have money spilling out of my pockets. But my content is pretty good, and I have been diligent with my writing since 2008. That should count for something. At least Google thinks so. At least Google ranks and honors the good content developers of the world, because they are looking at the greater good of information sharing on a global scale. You have become a social channel that's about the money. And frankly, it's not fair. And as for companies and bloggers urged to pay for likes? They probably feel taken to the cleaners right now. And these updates have completely changed the personal Facebook experience for many of us.
I want the old Facebook back, where it was a place to reconnect with old friends and discover new people, places and feeds that had cool content. It was not as much about brands and companies as it was about creating a community around your little cyber-self. I followed bloggers I adored, and yes-even small companies I discovered and loved. I commented and shared many of their posts. They showed up in my feed a lot more regularly. Now I don't see them at all. Now I see ridiculous promoted posts 5 times a week asking me to engage with a bottled water, a new beer or some ketchup. Where are the pages and people I CHOSE to engage with years ago? They must not have deep enough pockets to continue getting visibility to me.
My guess is you will continue to answer to your bean counters. After all, you are a publicly held company now. But don't be surprised when people begin using Facebook less and less. We don't want to be sold to all the time. We don't want companies forced on us. And we believe in the underdog, the little guys out there that are creating and sharing. We want to hear from them. We want to give them a chance to have their voices heard. It's why we "liked" many of them in the first place.
My blogger-self wants to be able to connect with my followers that opted to do so-and not just 2% of them on any given post. I don't have money. But I do have a voice. So at least maybe 2% of my followers will see this and they will share it. Maybe, just maybe, you will listen and make some changes to help us little guys with good ideas and expertise to share. Maybe you can start ranking ideas and content as high as you rank media spend?
The Urban Domestic Diva