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George Takei feuds with Facebook

June 14, 2012|By Deborah Netburn
  • George Takei, who played Captain Sulu on the popular television show and movie series "Star Trek" photographed in 2006.
George Takei, who played Captain Sulu on the popular television show and… (Ricahrd Drew / AP Photo )

George Takei — former Star Trek actor and social media rock star — has a beef with Facebook, and on Wednesday he turned to his Facebook page to vent his frustration.

Takei was annoyed that Facebook was now giving him the option to pay to make sure that more of his fans would see his posts under a new feature called Promoted Page Posts. Takei was under the assumpition that all his fans could see all his posts without any money exchanging hands, just by choosing All Updates from the right-hand side of his posts.

“I understand that FB has to make money, especially now that it is public, but in my view this development turns the notion of ‘fans’ on its head,” he wrote. “So I encourage all friends and fans to visit my page regularly to make sure they share in all the fun.”

Takei’s Facebook page has more than 2 million fans, including, apparently, people who work at Facebook. So, not long after Takei made his complaints public, a Facebook engineer spotted the gripe on his own news feed and took it upon himself to explain what had happened.

According to the engineer, Facebook hasn’t made any changes in how fans interact with the pages they like.

“We’ve changed NOTHING about the way posts are delivered to fans,” he wrote. “I still see your posts in my feed all the time (keep ‘em coming :). The main point of confusion we’ve seen is that pages don’t realize that their posts were never reaching 100% of fans. If you go to your page insights, you’ll see this has always been the case.”

Takei posted the rebuttal on his own site, as well as a work-around that his fans came up with to make sure they will never miss a nugget of Takei’s Facebook gold.

Takei seems to prefer this option to paying for his fans to see his posts. “Nearly all of my posts are just things I find funny, or touching, or thought-provoking. They have little to do with me personally, so I can’t see myself paying extra for those,” he told the Wall Street Journal.

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