Survey of Arts Management

Course blog for American University PERF-570, Fall 2014

Facebook is Firing Nonprofits

I was at first pretty mad by the title of this article Facebook Is Firing Nonprofits (And Why We’re Dumb to Let it Happen). The company has been “firing” nonprofits that don’t use the site’s (paid) metric and marketing tools. That seemed wrong. After all it doesn’t “cost” Facebook anything to keep nonprofits accounts up, and nonprofits benefit from any exposure they can get. Besides, if individuals don’t have to pay for a Facebook account, why should a corporation?

My take away? While it’s definitely not a classy move for Facebook to make by any means, I understand the company’s thought process a little better. It’s not enough for nonprofits to just passively maintain their accounts and “not be a bother”. Facebook is a vital marketing tool, that nonprofits can (and should) use just like any other business. Having a business account and never using the metric and marketing tools, to Facebook, is kind of like sitting around in a restaurant and not ordering. You’re not bothering anyone, but you’re also kind of missing the point. What folks think? Did Facebook go too far, or is it understandable for a for profit business to want to make profit?

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5 comments on “Facebook is Firing Nonprofits

  1. shrulala
    October 5, 2014

    Last week my friend and I were talking about this pay model of Facebook. I’m still trying to understand what they want to be paid for…. for the metric and marketing tools or maintaining a page. Many non-profits might not have the capability or need to maintaining the metric. For e.g. the volunteer non-profit I work for is only on Facebook to maintain a page and share pictures. We can’t afford to pay and also we don’t want the metrics. We are just sharing events on it and don’t have the bandwidth to maintain metrics. So what happens to small organization like ours?

  2. benjamendouglas
    October 5, 2014

    I was talking to my coworker (the marketing director at the Torpedo Factory) about this last week. All of the sudden, even though we do paid ads, people aren’t seeing them. Viral responses are VERY low, and organic views are practically non-existent. This change SUCKS!

  3. gormleykimberly
    October 6, 2014

    Thanks for the comments/ opinions, folks! I’m back to being pissed at Facebook now (:

  4. awellfare89
    October 7, 2014

    This is definitely hard to accept, as most of us have been on the site from it’s “invite only” social model to an increasing marketing-central tool. It’s still a weird hybrid in that it doesn’t see the value of providing benefits for non-profits. I think you could get more to participate in paid advertisements if there was. But, like the article says, it’s just not worth it to Facebook right now.

  5. lcrowley2014
    October 10, 2014

    I’m even surprised they are allowed to do this… If Facebook had a mission statement, I’m sure this would be against it. From my perspective, FB is an important tool for small nonprofits who maybe can’t afford or spend the money and energy needed to maintain an active web presence. FB is a vital way to easily create events, direct people for more information, etc. Making it a pay to play field just makes FB more alike everything else. What a sea-change FB has undergone since it’s garage beginnings.

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