Thursday, May 26, 2011

Fun With Facebook Groups --Avoiding FB Group Archiving!

by Denis M. Sweeney
26 May, 2011

Facebook Groups
A while back, I created several Facebook Groups, just for fun, to see what it was about, and a couple of the groups grew pretty large. I grew up in Northeast Pennsylvania, and a local station, WNEP-TV, Channel 16 had a popular self-produced children's program called The Land of Hatchy Milatchy, so one of my groups honored that show.

This week I heard that groups were being updated to a new format. One of my groups, I was allowed to "upgrade to the new format" with the push of a button. 
But the second group, The Land of Hatchy Milatchy "is scheduled to be archived"
"Over the next few months, Facebook will be archiving all groups created using the old groups format. When this group is archived, its wall posts, photos and discussion threads will move to the new groups format, but group members will need to be re-added."
The Land of Hatchy Milatchy group has 7,121 members. I thought I'd look at the member list to see if I could copy all the names in hopes of re-inviting them all after the eminent, and dreaded archive. And what does Facebook give me? A pop-up window broken into groups of 100! 
So to be able to copy them all, I would have to... let me see if I can get the math right here... click "see more" about 72 times! That is my reward for creating a popular group? --Gee thanks Facebook!
Even worse, assuming I went to the trouble of copying all the member names, I would have re-invite all the members to the new group, and the invitations likely have similar limits. I'm speculating here, but I imagine I would have to send 72 groups of 100 invitations to the new group?!

New Information
I just read a little more about this issue on the Facebook help page, and it appears that Facebook is purposely trying to weed out inactive groups. If a group is deemed "Active enough" it will be given the option to upgrade to the new format, otherwise the group is archived. And, as I described above, they don't make it easy!

What Can You Do?! --Help Save the Group!
If you want to help our cause, join The Land of Hatchy Milatchy group, and save us from sure obscurity! 
I know Facebook doesn't like to share much, unless they're getting a piece of the action, but it sure would be nice if they provided an easier way to re-invite members, even if it was anonymous to the admin (me). It's not rocket science here.

Alright, that concludes my Usability rant. Until next time!


Anonymous said...

Dennis, thanks for thoughts. I have a group with 47,000 people in it. We created another group and invited folks to re-join. So far we have 887 active members, which, as you stated is what Facebook wants. It's all about advertising and information sharing with them.Our group had 47,00 people who joined to stand up for a cause. Facebook would rather have this in a page format, but we still can't move anyone and only friends can join members to the new group, which is not great.
I actually copied 3,200 members to word and figured it would take like 20 hours to do 40,000. Then What? Invite them all with an e mail? That would take years.
Yea, Facebook wants small active groups.
Good luck with your groups.

Denis408 said...

Robert, I feel your pain! 40,000 people --What a gargantuan effort.