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Travel Forums System Talk Facebook Information

1. Posted by Isadora (Travel Guru 13926 posts) 5y

Overlord comments requested...

I can only speak for Kris' and my own forums, but I am seeing more and more (especially new) members adding their Facebook username to their inquiries/responses. Regardless of their post count, I have viewed the information as personal and have been snipping it out. Adding the 'no personal information, please' comment, of course. Usually, I'll add my own comment asking that members use the message center to exchange such information. It also is more prevalent among younger TPers - meaning chronological age versus time as members.

So, my question: Are FB usernames in the same category as personal e-mail addresses, phone numbers and other such information?

2. Posted by bex76 (Moderator 3712 posts) 5y

I have snipped a few recently too, and assumed they fall into the same category as other personal information.

3. Posted by mojorob (Moderator 1047 posts) 5y

I think this is personal information too (and potentially promotional in some cases), and would snip it - along with twitter usernames that I've seen a few times too.

On a member's profile page would be fine for facebook & twitter in my view (as long as they aren't obvious spammers of course!).

[ Edit: Edited on 07-Apr-2011, at 17:44 by mojorob ]

4. Posted by Sander (Moderator 4808 posts) 5y

I personally don't feel comfortable snipping facebook links (let alone "my name on facebook is ...") - not quite certain why. I think it reeks too much of censorship to me personally, probably because I'm rather strongly anti-facebook, and so I wouldn't be able to clearly delineate between snipping because it's personal information (which I find debatable), and snipping because I don't want to see even more promotion of facebook (but the purpose of the poster is not to promote facebook).

I also think it's really hard to sell a "no facebook links" rule to (new) members here; no phonenumbers / email addresses is already tricky, if covered adequately by "we care about your privacy even if you don't", but this feels a step further still.

5. Posted by Utrecht (Moderator 5595 posts) 5y

Haven't seen them around much on my relatively quiet forums;)
Still, I would certainly snip it. I categorize it the same way that I would do with links to personally uploaded youtube crap and consider it some sort of 'spam' (not really that promotional, but still).
Maybe have a general forum rule added about personal pages. Not that it would be totally forbidden but that we rather keep it like it is and decide to let it go or snip it? So moderator decide per case to keep it or not?

Cheers
Mike

[ Edit: Edited on 08-Apr-2011, at 04:52 by Utrecht ]

6. Posted by Isadora (Travel Guru 13926 posts) 5y

Quoting Sander

I personally don't feel comfortable snipping facebook links (let alone "my name on facebook is ...") - not quite certain why. I think it reeks too much of censorship to me personally, probably because I'm rather strongly anti-facebook, and so I wouldn't be able to clearly delineate between snipping because it's personal information (which I find debatable), and snipping because I don't want to see even more promotion of facebook (but the purpose of the poster is not to promote facebook).

I also think it's really hard to sell a "no facebook links" rule to (new) members here; no phonenumbers / email addresses is already tricky, if covered adequately by "we care about your privacy even if you don't", but this feels a step further still.

Your first comments are quite the reason I asked the question. For me, it's a very gray area when the Facebook mention is not promotional. Though I do see it as a type of personal information, it usually is in the form a person's first and last name. In some, not all, cases that information can also be found in the member's TP profile. Like you, I'm not a big fan of FB but I do use it. (Only way to stay in touch with some regulars since they don't come to visit me. )

The first few snips were because they appeared to be promotional in nature. But, I made the decision to remain consistent across the board. I still wrestle with that decision. I also struggle with it because of the ability to 'share' blogs via FB, Twitter, Stumbleupon, etc. I realize sharing blogs is a different aspect altogether but the relationship is still there. Members are basically using the FB information as a way of contacting each other, but is that not why there is a TP message center?

Since mojorob mentioned it, does Twitter information fall into the same gray area? I don't see Twitter info often but the few that have shown up have been snipped. And again, commenting to using the message center to share such information. I guess what I'm looking for is that line in the sand that divides acceptable versus unacceptable because it's becoming a bit blurred. (That's me trying to see without my glasses.)

7. Posted by Peter (Admin 5789 posts) 5y

Actually, I don't really see a problem with the "Find me as Peter Daams on Facebook" type posts (please don't snip me ;)). Sharing one's full name is not against our rules. Telling people to "find them on FB" is not much different to "let's chat on Messenger" ;)

Sharing Facebook details doesn't have the same implication as sharing email addresses or phone numbers do. Really, all they are sharing is their full name. They still need to accept friend requests, etc. so it's not easy to spam like email and not such a problem if they're posting other people's details (the two main concerns around personal contact info).

Now, if they are linking to a Facebook PAGE, ie.. one like the Travellerspoint one, then that is a whole other kettle of fish. That is almost always promotional in my opinion.

That's my view. Glad to have the discussion though. It's always easier to loosen rules then it is to tighten them, so if we make a policy of allowing it there's no real way of going back :)

8. Posted by Isadora (Travel Guru 13926 posts) 5y

Thanks for the clarification, Peter. I didn't want to be snipping things out if they were acceptable content and then a member complains. I do agree a link to a page should be removed.

9. Posted by mojorob (Moderator 1047 posts) 5y

Quoting Peter

Actually, I don't really see a problem with the "Find me as Peter Daams on Facebook" type posts (please don't snip me ;)). Sharing one's full name is not against our rules. Telling people to "find them on FB" is not much different to "let's chat on Messenger" ;)

Sharing Facebook details doesn't have the same implication as sharing email addresses or phone numbers do. Really, all they are sharing is their full name. They still need to accept friend requests, etc. so it's not easy to spam like email and not such a problem if they're posting other people's details (the two main concerns around personal contact info).

Now, if they are linking to a Facebook PAGE, ie.. one like the Travellerspoint one, then that is a whole other kettle of fish. That is almost always promotional in my opinion.

You mention about linking to a facebook PAGE, and you mention the "find me as... on facebook" type - but what about actual linking to a facebook profile?

With facebook profiles it's difficult because some people have their privacy settings high and almost nothing can be seen or done unless you're a friend on facebook with them - however other people have their settings really low, and in some cases pretty much everything can be viewed on a profile by a non-friend. In some cases people can use facebook like a blog (Notes on facebook is used like this for example), and picture gallery which are viewable by everyone - the kind of things that tend to be snipped on the forums at TP (e.g. links to blogs and other websites - for newer users, in case they're self-promoting).

So in my mind there isn't a clear line, in some cases it can be a friendly thing for a link to a facebook profile (though not necessarily the wisest thing to do), and in other cases it could be as self-promotional as links to a blog or other website.

10. Posted by Peter (Admin 5789 posts) 5y

Perhaps if they are linking to the page, then we investigate? And then it kind of depends on the context. In the Travel Companions forum, I can hardly see a problem with it. If it's in another forum, then the motivation comes into play. Not always easy to work out, but usually it's pretty clear if they're doing something like this for spammy reasons or not.