Open Letter to Mark Zuckerberg

Purchased from iStock, Getty Images, Source Lammeyer

Dear Mr Zuckerberg, I know you’ve had a lot of challenges lately, and I’m really sorry about that. Please know the last thing I want to do is add to the “drama” that must be your life… however, I feel compelled to tell you that your company’s policies SUCK!

Yes, I realise that I am but one, insignificant voice amongst your one billion plus subscribers, but it’s my voice and it must be heard.

I recently created a Facebook Group, titled “PMR/GCA – If you don’t laugh, you’ll cry.” The group was created for individuals who are afflicted with Polymyalgia Rheumatica (PMR) and/or Giant Cell Arteritis (GCA). These two linked, auto-immune, inflammatory conditions, primarily effect women over 50. You remember us, the throw away, worthless, invisible demographic that you don’t give a crap about!

The purpose of the group was to give people, who suffer from one/both of these illnesses, an outlet where they could go to socialise. Laugh. Cry. Vent. Just be. Sure, there are other Facebook sites out there, dedicated to these illnesses, but they tend to be rather serious and the conversations usually relate to the illnesses, side effects, treatments, etc.

Our Group was set up as a place people could go to LAUGH. A feel good place for us to poke fun at ourselves and at the same time vent and express our frustration and anger at having these overwhelming disease(s).

The Group hadn’t been up for very long and we had only about 180 members, when I received a vague and ambiguous message (on the Groups home page) that said, the Group had been “temporarily disabled,” because we had violated one or more of the six “Facebook Community Standards.”

I assumed (because I was not told) that we may have violated the “Intellectual Property,” standard, which relates Trademark and Copyright privileges. This was my assumption, because we certainly had not posted ANYTHING related to:

  • Violence and Criminal Behaviour (Terrorist activity, human trafficking, regulated goods)
  • Safety (Risk of physical harm or direct threats to public safety, including suicide
  • Objectionable Content (Hate speech, violence, adult nudity, sexual activity
  • Integrity and Authenticity (Misrepresentation and “False news”)
  • Content-Related Requests (Underage accounts, Government requests for removal, legal guardian requests for removal)

Many of us in the Group are well over 50, we’re all sick, we have little to no social interaction with “real” human beings, except when we are on-line; and believe me, we’re pretty harmless.

We are not, by nature “Rule Breakers,” …well at least not many of us anyway, but we did post images of our pets, grandchildren, holidays and yes the occasional funny (perhaps copyrighted) images, meme, YouTube videos, TV/Movie clip, etc… Sorry.

Since you did not tell us which Standard(s) we violated, it was like finding the proverbial “needle in a haystack!” I (as the site Administrator ) spent over 5 hours cleaning up the site of what “I thought, might be,” the offending posts (all potentially related to copyright/trademark violations)

I requested that Facebook perform a “Review”of the site and reestablish our Group as soon as possible. You did that within just a few hours (which was very impressive, by the way); you “enabled” the Group and we were up and running again! Hooray!!!!

However, less than 4 days later (Big Brother was apparently watching!!!!) you, without any warning, disabled our Group again, only this time permanently!

The Group was just gone. It no longer existed… it was like we were never there! You “pulled the rug” out from under almost 200 “mature,” sick, angry, disappointed people, who were all left sitting around wondering what hell happened?

Dude, YOU were called out on Capitol Hill , they slapped YOUR hand because YOU allowed advertisements for regulated items such as opioids and you admitted that you allow “discussion” of topics such as the individual sale and trade of drugs, firearms, ammunition and more! Yet somehow clips that Granny’s posted of I Love Lucy (on the chocolate factory, assembly line) or that Homer Simpson meme, threw off your moral compass?

Again, I have no idea what post(s) violated the Community Standards this time, but the site had been cleaned up, members were told what was and was not acceptable, they were provided with URL’s to free image websites, and the Facebook Community Standards were shared. I even placed an “Announcement” on the Home Page advising members that if I believed they violated any one of the six standards, their post would be taken down immediately.

What’s done is done. You’ll probably never see this “Open Letter,” but I, for one, feel better for writing it!

Your company policies sucks.

You are obviously NOT a customer service/people oriented organisation, (I guess with over a billion subscribers you don’t have to give a damn, do you?)

And it seems you couldn’t care less about communicating with or educating your Users. …or at least the “older,” worthless, female ones, anyway.

Shame on YOU Mr Zuckerberg, shame on you!

Your mother must be very proud!

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35 Comments

  1. wow! well said.!! I wondered what was going on. First Health Unlocked. Are you gone from there? and now this????? What is going on . Mercury retrograde?? so Glad word press hasn’t shut you down. haha. sorry for all the mess. Hope your knee is bionic and better and will keep on seeing you HERE! thanks.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks BW, Yes, I left HU a couple weeks ago… I posted a goodbye/thank you post, though. Did you not see it? Shhhhh, don’t say that (about WordPress, they might hear you!) Knee is getting there although still very painful… my eye (after cataract surgery) is FABULOUS!!! Be well, M xxxxx

      Like

      1. I did not see it. was in Alaska I think… or packing.. and your eye!!! great. wow. those two things in a row…if you didn’t have PMR already you would have gotten it!! a perk of having pmr. can’t get it.

        Liked by 1 person

      2. Hahahahahaha… I have both PMR & GCA, so I’m safe on both fronts! Cant get it twice!!!! Well you can, but have to have gotten rid of it first. I’m going down to 12mg on Monday and scared to death! Anymore more excitement like this and I may fall off the edge!

        Liked by 1 person

  2. You have to be kidding? Considering the rubbish which goes through FB all the time this is really weird. What’s worse is them not telling you why. If there’s been a complaint, and I can’t imagine anyone complaining about any of the content I’ve seen – I check in daily – then the administrator(s) should be given a chance to respond, or if need be comply with the requirements. Btw I never saw the thread on HU where apparently people opposed to the idea of a FB page piled on so I’m still completely in the dark about the origin of the whole fracas.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Ohhhh, you missed a lot! I casually mentioned on HU that I was opening a FB Group for PMR/GCA… people went ballistic! It was like I was the antichrist out to destroy HU! I tried to explain, it was in addition to not in place of and that there were already 4 FB sites out there dedicated to PMR/GCA… but the masses were wild. The post had over 100 comments, some in support but may opposed. It was nuts! I deleted the post to stop the conversation… This situation is just unbelievable… Thank you !

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    2. it was all nuts. silly in fact. I really felt like there were just a FEW who were opposed…and as aways they seem to get their way. Sad. You were loved on HU! Mamicita

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Ohhhhh, thank you! I miss it so much. Not “it” per say , but the people the camaraderie, the friendship… Are things still unfair and unbalanced? I left because of “principle.” Different rules for different people. That did not sit well with me. Anyway… Thank you!

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  3. Well said. I am still speechless. I can’t imagine what would have lead to Facebook shutting down the page.

    You did your best! I am so grateful for your blog! Are you on Twitter?

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Hey .. can I put a link to your blog on HU? in case someone there would like to stay in touch? (I am not afraid! haha)

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    1. YES! YES! YES! Thank you and F**K them too Several people have suggested that some of my critics may have “ratted on us.” For what, I have no idea… I love Lucy clips!!!!! Really? Thank you.

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    1. Gutted. I have no idea and I think that’s the hardest part! Not being told what we did wrong!!! Just closed down like a bucnh of insignificant, nothings.. It is a good thing we had exchanged messages, or else we would not even be able to communicate at all… Stay tuned and watch this space! Thank you !!!

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  5. I don’t trust Facebook at all. When you think of all the dangerous rubbish that thrives there and your cheerful little page gets stopped, with no explanation or right of redress! It makes me angry. 🤯
    You will find an outlet, I’m sure………😥xxxxxxx

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Thank you Jane, There are other social media sites out there… I’m researching one now that Julian found and suggested. We’ll be back… we had almost 200 people and were forming a lovely, little cohesive group. Thank you

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    2. They do it all the time… close down Groups without telling the why! I guess they need to show the “powers that be,” that they are being diligent in their effort to protect the integrity of their Community Standards! Opiates, guns and drugs are okay, but don’t dare you a copyrighted image you found on Google Images!!!!

      Liked by 1 person

  6. Oh dear Melissa – how bloody annoying – but this blog at least made me feel SOMETHING could be said and I agree even if they are not ‘listening’ it is the principle involved. Still I for one would like to know their ‘rationale’ even if it is entirely ‘irrational’ !!?? NOT FAIR !!! – why don’t the spell out what the ‘violation’ was about ??? Can we all do a ‘petition’ or something similar ??? I feel disgusted and WANT the site BACK (stamp stamp)!! Through all this you have had to deal with so much STUFF so thanks for all of it Melissa – but we will all be watching out for your blogs without which the universe would not now ever be the same XXXXX

    Liked by 1 person

    1. What a lovely thing to say, Della, thank you! I’m sure the Universe would be just fine, but lovely nonetheless! I have asked friends to share the blog on their FB page, I have sent to the NY Times, I’ve posted here and on another writers site called Medium… not sure what else we can do. I guess if anybody knows anybody in the journalism game… I’d love for them to share it. Or send it to your local papers, maybe someone will pick it up. If not it did make me feel so much better just writing it! Thank you so much!!!! Love, Meliss

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  7. I will wait until your NEXT post on this blog to put the link on HU .. so the few nasties don’t see we have been writing about them on this one and somehow REPORT you. haha.

    Liked by 1 person

  8. I’ve been missing your rantings on HU 😁 Being a repressed Scot I envy your ability to let it all out ( & your witty writing style !). Sadly it’s not the same forum it used to be with the recent changes. Wishing you all the best with your knee recovery and your next cataract operation. Nikki (aka Catocat)

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you, thank you so much! Yes, as my Mom used to say, “better out than in.” I’m sorry that HU is not the same, I have heard that from many others, as well… too bad, we had a great thing!

      Like

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