Facebook's New Platform Policy Bans Incentivising Users to Like Pages

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Facebook's New Platform Policy Bans Incentivising Users to Like Pages
Facebook on Thursday announced a new Platform Policy along with the release of its updated Graph API v2.1, as well as updated Android and iOS SDKs for developers. All the developers will have to make required changes to conform to the new Platform Policy by November 5.

While there are quite a few changes that have been made by Facebook, the two important changes are seen under the games and proper use categories.

Now game developers will have to mention in their app's description (on Facebook, or other platforms) if there are any mandatory or optional in-app charges associated with the game. Facebook thinks that this will give users a clear indication about if game may charge them at some point.

Next up, under the new 'proper use' policy, app developers will not be able to incentivise users for utilising social plugins or liking a Page. Facebook notes that developers can still incentivise users to log into their app, like their app's Page, enter a promotion on their app's Page, or check-in at a place.

Explaining the motivation behind the change to its 'proper use' policy, Facebook on its developer blog said, "To ensure quality connections and help businesses reach the people who matter to them, we want people to like Pages because they want to connect and hear from the business, not because of artificial incentives. We believe this update will benefit people and advertisers alike."

This is not the first time that Facebook has made moves to counter developers looking to artificially boost their Page likes or app's popularity, a trend well-characterised by the social sharing players of the tremendously popular Candy Crush Saga game are incentivised to perform.

In the meanwhile, the updated Graph API v2.1 incorporates 'several commonly requested' features for developers, with the company's stated goal being to increase consistency and simplicity. Facebook says that the new API is now available starting Thursday for all apps, and will be used as the default API for all new apps. Developers can see the full changelog for a full list of changes.
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