First Meerkat, then Periscope, and now, “Facebook Live”, Facebook’s response to create its own live streaming service directly inside of the Facebook platform. Users will be able to record and broadcast live events to share with their family and friends. Once a livestream is over, it instantly publishes to your timelines as a regular video.
Only a small group of U.S. iPhone users have the feature now, but once it’s rolled out to everyone, it’s quite easy to create a broadcast. Simply tap on “Update Status” and select the live video button, write a description about the stream, and decide who will be able to watch along. During the live stream, other users can comment on the video, and the host can see which of his or her friends is watching.
You can also discover live videos from celebrities and public figures, who have had access to this feature for a few months. If you want to see more from your favorite celebrities or closer friends, you’ll be able to subscribe and get notified when those individuals are streaming.
“This is a direct response to Snapchat, Periscope, and Twitter. Facebook wants to take a big piece from the current real-time news and live broadcast pie.”
Facebook also released Collage, a new way to share photos on Facebook. This new feature scans your camera roll and groups together pictures that were taken on the same day. To create a collage, users can tap on “Photo” in the iOS app, and will see recent moments on their camera roll transformed into different collages. Users can rearrange, add photos, remove them, then add a title and share to Facebook.
Both “Facebook Live” and “Collages” are completely different, but they speak to Facebook’s mission of promoting sharing, connectivity, and real-time entertainment and information with your friends and family, either through live videos or collages. You can read more about the announcement from Facebook here.
Here are some of the things you’ll discover in this show:
How Our Page Disappeared and What We Did About It
On a late Sunday afternoon with my home filled with kids and cousins and my wife cooking dinner, I eased into the couch to watch a football game. Since I drained the battery playing with my new iPhone, it was charging in another room when a text message came at 4:12 PM: “We have a bit of an emergency. Our Facebook page is missing. You around?” I had missed the text.
The phone rang 12 minutes later, and my wife picked it up. Our community manager Erik Fisher was calling to tell me what happened. Between the time he texted me and when he called, Erik poked around Facebook and confirmed it. The Social Media Examiner Facebook page had disappeared.
And I mean it was really gone. I even received a notification that my personal profile was incomplete because it didn’t list where I worked.
Our Facebook page had simply vanished. Image: Shutterstock.
I checked to see if I could view the page on mobile or on my laptop, if I could get into the admin side of the page and if the Facebook Fan widget appeared on our site. The answer for everything: no.
Listen to the show to learn why it’s important to instruct your team to call you in an emergency situation.
Initially, I thought we’d been hacked. Then I recalled how after I did the Chalene Johnson story we’d taken all the steps necessary to secure the accounts of all of our staff.
We secured email with 2-step authentication to our corporate Gmail accounts and we turned on Facebook Login Approvals. Plus, we recently completed a security audit of everyone on our team, and have a master document of who has administrative access to what. These are all steps you can take to secure your business accounts, and you can hear more about how to implement them in the podcast.
Listen to the show to hear our thoughts about “what if” the page was gone permanently.
After I got off the phone with Erik, everything around me faded into the background. Within minutes I posted the following to friends only:
Initially, I decided to share it only to friends just in case there was something nefarious going on. Later on, I changed the status to public.
The answer to all of these questions was “no.” I searched all over to find out how to submit my issue to Facebook. I reached out to my network and someone eventually told me about the Report Pages that Disappeared form.
After searching for where to contact Facebook, I was finally able to report the missing page.
I reached out to all of my friends. Image: Shutterstock.
Through Dennis and Dave I discovered that had I set up a Business Manager account, I could have granted access to someone who spends a lot on Facebook and they could have elevated the issue to their support managers.
Find out which account information I should have documented to help me resolve this issue faster.
Eventually, Dennis Yu reached out and made an email introduction for me. We received this reply on Monday:
“Good news is, the Page is still “there” – it hasn’t been deleted. But it looks like something is preventing it from being “published.” I’ve reached out the [sic] the Pages team to get an update. I’ll let you know as soon as it’s back up again.”
Listen to the show to hear our strategy for getting our page back.
One day passes
A lot of people, like Ryan Deiss, reached out to say they’d experienced the same issue and it was resolved in about three hours. But we’d been without a Facebook page for a day and it had been 9 or 10 hours since we received the email from Facebook. I needed to find a way to take things to the next level.
I started posting about the issue in of all my Facebook groups, starting with the News Media and Publishing on Facebook group, which is moderated by Facebook. A rep connected me, and I finally had my first direct communication with Facebook.
I posted multiple calls for assistance. Image: Shutterstock.
I posted regular “NO PROGRESS” updates on the comments of the initial post I’d made on my personal profile, and I asked everyone to share it.
Mari Smith decided to share my post to the 160,000 fans of her page. I also tagged super high-profile friends like Guy Kawasaki, Robert Scoble and Gary Vaynerchuk.
People were tagging and sharing it. Someone even tagged Mark Zuckerberg. More than 250 people shared that post.
Run With It VA was one of many pages to share my post.
The response and support was overwhelming.
Like many other supporters, Scorpion Radio Group was surprised a large page like ours could disappear.
I also asked all of our staff to share the post on Twitter and Google+, and plead for help.
Listen to the show to discover why it’s important to join Facebook groups for your industry.
My plan for day two
If the issue wasn’t resolved by the second day, I was ready to buckle down and escalate my approach to the issue. To spur our wider audience to action, I planned to email our 425,000 email subscribers with an explanation.
He’s the email copy Derek Halpern suggested:
You might have heard about the big organic reach decline. We dealt with it. And we still updated our Facebook page a lot more times per day. And now, as of this past weekend, Facebook randomly deleted our page. Yep. They just DELETED the page. No warning. No message. Nothing.
Look, despite everyone who has ever complained, I still invested in my Facebook platform. I believe Facebook has a right to build a business. I happily promote my posts. But I do not think it’s fair that a publisher can lose their page without notice on a drop of a dime and not hear anything about it for 48 hours, despite several people I know reaching out to their personal contacts within Facebook.
Listen to the show to hear what hashtag someone suggested we try to get trending.
Morning of day two
On day two, I woke to an email from Juan Felix, who is on our team in Europe. The subject: “Received a call from Facebook.”
After Juan had submitted a request for help, Ana from the Global Marketing Solutions Team called his mobile phone to confirm that everything looked okay with our page and apologized for the late reply. She also sent Juan an email thanking him for reaching out and telling him to reply directly to her if we were still experiencing difficulties.
I asked Juan if Ana knew why the page was down, and he said she didn’t. She only said the page was back up. Following that, I received numerous messages from other folks at Facebook, saying the same thing. When I asked the first guy who contacted me what happened, this was the scary response:
“Your Page was not the only one affected. Not exactly sure what happened but it appears a back-end alert was triggered that caused your page and several others to go invisible temporarily.”
We had such a great response and lots of assistance in solving our Facebook problem, we told our friends and fans we’d share our experience in a podcast.
Listen to find out why the last post we made before everything disappeared was ironic.
Should this happen to you, I suggest you remain calm, let the process play out, engage with folks, leverage the cumulative power of your networks everywhere and encourage your team to do the same.
Our frustrations with Facebook are ongoing. During this recording, our Facebook page disappeared again. There was very limited communication from anyone who could help, and zero communication about when and why it went down and so on.
UPDATE: After we finished the recording, I kept getting messages from people regarding the status of our page. I went to GeoPeeker.com and saw our Facebook page was visible in some parts of the world and not in others, which may have had something to do with the different servers. I was optimistic that the problem would be fixed again soon. (It was.)
Listen to the show to hear what we hope you learn from the podcast.
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The networking is going to be off the hook. We have our opening-night party on an aircraft carrier, the USS Midway.