You’re gonna love this. And by love I mean be filled with rage. I started receiving emails from people today, frustrated that they could no longer set a specific tab as their default landing tab in Facebook. Everyone assumed it was a bug. It’s not.
UPDATE May 20, 10:45AM: Facebook has actually apologized and done a complete 180 in the last 12 hours and they have reversed this decision. I’m leaving the original post up for reference, but as of right now, they have reverted back to the original way it worked, where any page admin can set default tabs, regardless of the size of their fan base.
From their developer forums:
As of last night, we’ve removed the recently-added authentication requirement for setting custom landing tabs on Pages. The requirement was instituted as part of a Pages quality initiative, and we apologize for the inconvenience this caused to our developer and business community. We are re-investigating the situation, and will not make any further changes without first giving our community standard notice and lead-time.
Thanks for all your feedback,
According to this post on the Facebook Developer forums, Facebook has struck yet another critical blow to smaller companies who are trying to use the Facebook platform to grow their business without a lot of startup capital. The thread had started by someone asking why they could no longer edit the Facebook Fan Page settings to specify which application tab they wanted to set as the default landing page.
The Facebook platform is known for being exceptionally buggy, so most “me too”ers assumed it was a bug and patiently awaited a bug fix confirmation from Facebook. The question went unanswered for a day, until finally a Facebook employee dropped this bombshell.
We apologize for not messaging this earlier. Facebook recently made a change requiring that Pages be authenticated before enabling the ability to set a landing tab beyond Wall or Info. To be eligible for authentication, a Page must have greater than 10k fans or the Page admin must work with their ads account manager. If you are already working with an account representative, please contact that representative to begin the authentication process. If you do not work with an account representative, you can use this contact form to inquire about working with an account representative.
Also, for advertisers who don’t have a representative or 10k fans, and want to run ads and land users on a specific tab, you can still do so with standard Facebook ads by making their Destination URL as the URL incl. your tab. Unfortunately, this currently will not work with “Fan” ads.
What this means is that Facebook Fan Page admins can no longer specify a default landing tab for their fan page UNLESS they have 10k or more fans, OR they “have an account manager”. Having an account manager sounds great, right? The thing is, you have to spend at least $10k in Facebook advertising before they’ll even talk to you, let alone give you an account manager. That contact form leads to the “how much money are you willing to spend with us” form, and if your answer is less than $10k, don’t expect them to help you.
So once again, the little guy gets screwed. It started in November with their charges to their contest/promotional guidelines, which were also rolled out quietly with little or no notification to developers or users, which dictated something very similar. Certain types of promotions now have to be approved by an account manager. Only you don’t get an account manager unless you spend upwards of $10k in media buys.
Note that it appears as though this is only effective moving forward. If you’ve already set a default tab on your Facebook Fan page, they’re not going to take it away from you. At least not at this point. But as of yesterday, if you hadn’t already set a default tab, you won’t be able to do so without meeting one of the 10k requirements mentioned above.
I’m not even going to talk about the recent Facebook privacy issues. This isn’t the post for it, and honestly, I don’t have the energy to open that gigantic can of worms right now. But with those recent changes on top of this, I have to ask WTF they are thinking over there. Fuck you, Facebook.