WindoftheStars.com | Thoughts on Facebook Deactivation
Portfolio, blog and tutorials by world famous American Cosplay girl WindoftheStars, Mel Hoppe. Learn how to make armor and cosplays, with cosplay tutorial videos and more. Enjoy photos of elaborate to sexy cosplays made by WindoftheStars.
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Thoughts on Facebook Deactivation

Screen shot 2012-08-23 at 11.12.00 PM

As I’m sure a lot of you have heard, seen or experienced, Facebook decided to enforce their “Fake Name” portion of their Terms of Service on Tuesday of this week.  What does that mean? Well, Tuesday morning any of us that had a normal Facebook account that had “cosplay” as the last name had our page disabled.  We lost all our content, contacts, photos, messages, plus years of memories in one quick swoop.

I can understand that Facebook would want to enforce their TOS.  However, I do not condone the practice of select enforcement of such regulations.  Allowing such “fake names” at sign up which went unenforced for seven years, to going as an offense that results in deactivation overnight seems a little unreasonable.  Facebook gave practial no warning of the sudden coercion of their TOS.  Allegedly, they had made a press release to CNN and various tech sites of the pending enforcement, however I have not been able to find such statments.  Furthermore, if Facebook was going to do anything that would effect over 80 million users, it might be a good idea to inform their users ON Facebook. No automated messages through Facebook or e-mail were  sent out.  Not even an update on Facebook’s Facebook about the upcoming reinforcement of their TOS or friendly reminder of their TOS was made.  Plus, let’s not forget the millions of users out there that are using fake names that are obviously fake.  If names like “Kawaii Chan” can exists on Facebook with no repercussions, than so should “X Cosplay.”

Facebook claims that the use of “fake names” is a community security risk, and allowance of such practices would cause further bullying, impersonations and other negative behavior.  Ironically, cosplayers usually go by an alias to protect him or herself from unfavorable people online and to give some sense of privacy/separation between their cosplay lifestyle and their real life.  Forcing us to use our real names in such a massive public networking site causes a greater security risk than allowing one to use an alias.

Yes, Facebook Pages were created for public figures, companies, brands, ect. to have a presence on Facebook, however, Facebook’s Page system is inherently flawed.  The tagging system on Pages is an annoying cruel joke, that works just as well as blinker fluid. Also when a person opts to use a Page instead of a normal account, a significant chunk of user to user interaction is lost.  One can not see status updates of normal users, only Page updates can be seen on the Feed.  The only way to see status updates of normal users is to add them to a personal normal account.  This severed line of communication between users and Page owners really defeats the purpose of having a Facebook at all!

Basically, yes Facebook was in the right and us cosplayers were in the wrong. However, can you blame us? We use Facebook as a means of communication with people from all walks of life, and with Facebook having one of the largest social network in the world, it became the best, the most popular and in some cases the ONLY means of networking with individuals.  Yet in an effort to protect ourselves we used an alias which ironically can only be used on a section of Facebook that cuts off communication with the bulk of it’s users – the main reason we all joined Facebook in the first place.

 

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I’m currently working on getting my previous account back.  Until that can proceed further, I have started using my Facebook Page again.  You can follow my cosplay updates on Facebook here: https://www.facebook.com/WindoftheStars

 

 

AUTHOR: Mel

Mel is an internationally know cosplayer, who has won several awards for her costume work. She is skilled seamstress and artist, taking pride and value in the art of crafting costumes. Having been cosplaying for over a decade, she is a valued veteran of the cosplay community.

3 Comments
  • Good thing you posted this, now I’m going to have watch and make sure my music page which is labeled as John Kavanagh (music) on FB doesn’t Die as well. Facebook used to be a good networking till now, it’s just a pile of junk just like MySpace and twitter. I guess the biggest problem is as soon as they allow the public onto the page versus just college students that’s when everything changed, and personally I don’t like it anymore. I swear a lot of people don’t know this but Google plus is going to be the new social network everyone uses…

    August 24, 2012
  • Hi.

    This is not about security. This is all about money, about the Facebook business model

    Security risks have been for a long time now the perfect scapegoat for censorship and abusive laws on the Internet. They said they want to control terrorism and other illicit things things, but the truth is they only want to control your privacy.

    Facebook is no different. They don’t want fake names and they don’t give a damn about your security of your desire of wanting to separate private life and cosplay life. They want to now your real name because if they have your real name they can associate it to your hobbies (when you click “like” on something), your political views if you talk about that things, your friends… All of that is called “data mining”.
    Facebook then uses your data, your tastes, etc to publish advertising directed to it, or sell that data to other companies for profit. The business model of Facebook is all based on a big-scale network of private-data trading.

    Richard Stallman, the father of the Free Software movement has some really interesting views over this. If you think about it, Facebook/gmail SysOps can read a lot of our private information, more that we would be willing to let them know.

    Thats why they don’t want you to use a fake name. Their business model would be futile because they won’t have a way to link your “real life” self with your “internet self” and be able to trace a profile of you.

    It’s ironic that Facebooks says it values our privacy when the fact is that Facebook is the definitive espionage tool.

    This may sound a bit of conspiracy paranoia, but there are some judicial sentences on the US with fines over Facebook bad privacy policy, such as storing your photos for long time on their servers after you “deleted” them, and same goes for PM’s and such.

    Google is not much better, but (for now) they have a less restrictive pages policy.

    As far as I know (and I like to be informed on internet privacy-activism) the ONLY social network which has proven to be reliable and respectful to their users has been twitter (For example not giving private messages information to a repressive dictatorship governments without informing the user first, a thing that Facebook DOES). And even twitter has it’s problems too.

    Srry for the long post.

    tl;dr version: Facebook doesn’t give a damn. They want your real name to know about you and sell you things. Period.

    August 24, 2012

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