Facebook is impersonating you without your consent — you just don’t know it


Facebook is ‘impersonating’ people on the social network without their consent. What Facebook is doing is re-posting one of your ‘likes’ every once in awhile accompanied with a related article. The posts are in your name and they appear in feeds as if you posted them. People have no idea this is even happening, because posts that Facebook makes on your behalf don’t show up on your feed — but they do show in your friends’ and family’s news feeds.

Because it is re-posting your likes, the company isn’t making up things you never said per se. And, from a marketing perspective, it makes a lot of sense. The re-post gets the article more visibility, and it also somehow humanizes it due to it being accompanied by a like from someone you know or trust. However, Facebook users seemingly have no control over what is being posted. There’s no way to filter what gets posted — the only solution is to unlike everything. To make matters worse, Facebook considers this an intentional feature and “denies any wrongdoing and any liability whatsoever.” Meaning, they’re not going to fix this anytime soon.

The problems this can cause range from making your friends or family think you like inappropriate content to dead people liking posts and creepily popping up on your feeds again. One way to showcase this is by going through your feed now and spotting a ‘like’ by a friend that has a ‘Related Article’ next to it. Ask them about it — they probably don’t know it was posted under their name.

[via Bureau of Minds]

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  • Linda

    I’ve Googled to try to find out exactly HOW to unlike everything on Facebook (without trying to remember every page I’ve ever liked and then going to that page to unlike it), but I can’t find current instructions on how to do it. Is it even possible? The only instructions I found were outdated and no longer worked on the updated Facebook.


  • Mike

    Wouldn’t it be nice to have an unFacebook alternative where one doesn’t have to worry, monthly, about Facebook’s shenanigans and its profiteering, without obvious permission, on one’s own person? Surely it is possible for an unFacebook–or even Facebook–to be extremely profitable in an above-board way . . . .

  • BearPup

    As Kelltic observes, you voluntarily joined this “social” site, and voluntarily posted likes to the site, I’m not sure what else you should expect from a site that is looking to make money from its freebie users.

    This is one of many reasons – all privacy related – that I don’t do Facebook or twitter, or their ilk. If you put something public on the public web you need to expect that its ‘out there forever to everyone’.

    And complaining to both Facebook and its advertisers will get their attention. If enough people complain it’ll eventually make The News, and bad PR never helped anyone.

  • Kelltic

    So what? You stuck it out there in the world. Facebook restuck it. Facebook is public, people. Whadd’ya expect?

  • lazyboy

    Not sure about anyone else but over the last month I’ve wondered why I’m seeing my same posts re-posted in MY news feed. Am I the only one seeing this, as this article states that you’re not suppose to. First I thought it was social fixer doing this but I disabled it and still saw my re-posts.

  • Ashraf

    @Grantwhy: Your two statements are correct but wrong. Users may not not have a direct relationship to Facebook’s earnings, but they very much do affect it. It is because of Facebook’s users that people want to advertise on Facebook. Upset users enough and they might leave. Without users, Facebook won’t attract advertisers. The draw to Facebook are its users. Without users, Facebook is nothing.
    Now is this enough to upset people enough to leave Facebook? Probably not. But small things build upon themselves.
    Your suggestion may work, though.

  • Grantwhy


    Considering (1) people don’t pay for the services Facebook provide and (2) upsetting some users won’t cost Facebook much income (if at all), they probably don’t really care one way or the other.

    There is a way of getting Facebook to care though :-)

    If people started taking note of which companies/business were getting these ‘doppelganger/ghost’ posts, and those people started complaining to *THOSE* businesses asking/complaining why *THEY* are doing this, then Facebook might care.

    Don’t complain to Facebook, complain to the Advertisers. They will then (eventually) complain to Facebook about this tactic developing ‘bad will’ amongst their *paying* customers and Facebook *WILL* listen to the Advertisers, because unhappy Advertisers can cost Facebook income.

    Especially when they realise that some of the posts Facebook is are deceased people.

  • Ashraf

    Does Facebook really think people will be OK with this?