Ever since I created the Why Shamanism Now Facebook page for my teacher and friend Christina Pratt, I’ve been challenged by the issue of both being the creator/admin for the page and also wanting to be an active fan of the page.
This morning I ran across a very relevant, related post on Michelle Paul’s blog. Michele’s post does an excellent job of explaining those actions which are page-related, and those which are personal-related. In fact, the post answered or confirmed most of my questions about a Facebook admin role except one that is both technical and ethical: I manage the above-mentioned FB page with my both my “work” hat and my “play” hat on. That is, I created and manage this page to assist Christina, the one who actually owns the brand (radio show) that the Facebook page promotes. So that’s with my “work” hat on. I’m also a fan of the radio show and would sometimes like to post things to the wall as “me”, with my “play” hat on. Here’s the problem: as a Facebook page admin, I can’t post as me, I can only post as “the page”. In other words, people think the post is coming from “the radio show” (i.e., Christina).
If I had created this page using a “business” FB account — technically a duplicate, fictitious account– then I could manage the page with that account and post my thoughts/comments using my personal FB account. (Actually, I already am a “fan” of the page, but that seems to be all I can do with my “play” hat as the page owner and admin.)
Aside from the issue raised in Michele’s post and subsequent comments about the questionable practice of having two FB accounts, from an ethical stand-point would I be deceiving the rest of the page fans by being an admin and also making personal posts, and not disclosing the former when I post as the latter? In my own mind, I feel comfortable with playing both roles, but would other fans who perhaps don’t know me feel the same way? Is it even possible to post to a FB page that you admin without some underlying page-promotion intent? Or, does being an admin for a page require you to give up the option to also lend your opinion/thoughts to the page?
I’m curious what others think…