Beware: Facebook to Ban Users Who Profit Off Status Updates

Realtors and businesses beware. All Girl Scout’s be forewarned.

Facebook’s new policy change prohibits users from profiting off their status updates.

No joke.

So, who owns my words in my status updates? Do I own the right to solicit, promote, or to profit from my status to generate personal income?

According to Facebook,  No. And the repecussions are banishment from access to Facebook.

User Protection or Overreaction

So is Facebook protecting the user or is there a fear a loss of in not monetizing a potential revenue stream (my status update channel) here?

In a recent post, blogger Nick O’Neil’s says, “it’s pretty obvious what Facebook is trying to prevent: companies from launching get rich quick services through your Facebook profile and to prevent people like Jeremy Schoemaker from abusing the system .”

Yes, some spammers can ruin a user’s network reputation if they hijacked their status update. But ask yourself, is Facebook’s policy a bit draconian in “overprotecting” users from pay-per-tweet companies?


Online “Rights of Ownership” Undefined

What is not defined is whether users own the right to promote their’s or another’s business or commercial  product or service through their status update and receive commercial gain from that promotion.

Perhaps Facebook and other social network utilities and services should devise policies to enable users to responsibly “own” their own status update content and to do what they please with it.

The social experiment of the Internet’s Web 2.0 phase is a mediate collaboration between corporate online utilities and services and users’ social participation and content generation with and within them. The “terms of service” and privacy statements raise many questions that need to be discussed and decided upon: content ownership, user participation rights, user generated content, just to name a few.


Whose Intellectual Property?

Who “owns” the product of our ideas and content as generated within, from and across these online services on this public utility: the Internet? Do I own my pictures, my videos, my words as comments and definitely as status updates? Do I have a right to solicit my network thru my status to come to patronize my company or to buy my friend’s book or to support?

Perhaps its time to draft the Netizen’s Bill of Rights.


What do you think?

Leave a Comment with Facebook here.  Or read Facebook’s full policy here.

Amos White is an Social Media Marketing Evangelist and public speaker.
Follow Amos on Twitter @Mos42 or his blog https://amoswhite3.wordpress.com.
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1 Response to “Beware: Facebook to Ban Users Who Profit Off Status Updates”



  1. 1 Facebook Blows It Again « Amos White Internet Marketing Training & Stuff Trackback on August 29, 2010 at 12:57 pm

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