No Principles To Be Found On Facebook

Once upon a time Facebook had principles.

Facebook Principles

We are building Facebook to make the world more open and transparent, which we believe will create greater understanding and connection. Facebook promotes openness and transparency by giving individuals greater power to share and connect, and certain principles guide Facebook in pursuing these goals. Achieving these principles should be constrained only by limitations of law, technology, and evolving social norms. We therefore establish these Principles as the foundation of the rights and responsibilities of those within the Facebook Service.

Freedom to Share and Connect

People should have the freedom to share whatever information they want, in any medium and any format, and have the right to connect online with anyone – any person, organization or service – as long as they both consent to the connection.

Ownership and Control of Information

People should own their information. They should have the freedom to share it with anyone they want and take it with them anywhere they want, including removing it from the Facebook Service. People should have the freedom to decide with whom they will share their information, and to set privacy controls to protect those choices. Those controls, however, are not capable of limiting how those who have received information may use it, particularly outside the Facebook Service.

Free Flow of Information

People should have the freedom to access all of the information made available to them by others. People should also have practical tools that make it easy, quick, and efficient to share and access this information.

Fundamental Equality

Every Person – whether individual, advertiser, developer, organization, or other entity – should have representation and access to distribution and information within the Facebook Service, regardless of the Person’s primary activity. There should be a single set of principles, rights, and responsibilities that should apply to all People using the Facebook Service.

Social Value

People should have the freedom to build trust and reputation through their identity and connections, and should not have their presence on the Facebook Service removed for reasons other than those described in Facebook’s Statement of Rights and Responsibilities.

Open Platforms and Standards

People should have programmatic interfaces for sharing and accessing the information available to them. The specifications for these interfaces should be published and made available and accessible to everyone.

Fundamental Service

People should be able to use Facebook for free to establish a presence, connect with others, and share information with them. Every Person should be able to use the Facebook Service regardless of his or her level of participation or contribution.

Common Welfare

The rights and responsibilities of Facebook and the People that use it should be described in a Statement of Rights and Responsibilities, which should not be inconsistent with these Principles.

Transparent Process

Facebook should publicly make available information about its purpose, plans, policies, and operations. Facebook should have a town hall process of notice and comment and a system of voting to encourage input and discourse on amendments to these Principles or to the Rights and Responsibilities.

One World

The Facebook Service should transcend geographic and national boundaries and be available to everyone in the world.”

I’m sure they still do have some of some sort, but they’re not the same ones they had before. They’re not the ones I’ve listed above. At one point there was a link to them, and while that link was hard to find, it still could be found. Not anymore, it redirects you to their new About page. I was even redirected on the Wayback Machine to the new page, but thankfully  I know my way around that asset fairly well so I was able to obtain the screenshot I posted above and go to the archived page and copy them. If you do a web search you’ll still find reference to them, but if you click on the link you’ll be redirected to their new About page as well. If you click the link at the beginning of the listed principles it will take you to the archive of them I was fortunate enough to retrieve.

Why does this matter? What’s the big deal? If you read the ones I posted at the beginning of this you’ll see I’m sure.  Following those principles today will get you banned for at least 24 hours and depending on if you’ve received bans before or not, quite a bit longer. They’d probably get your page removed too, if you have one and post anything they disapprove of; as has happened to a lot of people recently.  It hasn’t been as bad as their last page purge, but when they begin deleting pages just because they bear the same name as a page that was removed for violating their community standards, even though the new page had posted nothing in violation, I’d say it’s the tip of a new iceberg.

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