Facebook Changes How Developers Incentivize Apps

August 08, 2014
By: Oliver VanDervoort

While Facebook (News - Alert) has come under fire for a number of moves over the last few months, it seems likely their most recent will receive plaudits from a number of users. Earlier this week, the social networking site announced two important changes to its Platform Policies under games and proper use.  The new policy gives developers 90 days to honor the new rules.

One of the new rules is that Facebook is making it mandatory for developers to disclose mandatory or optional in-app charges. This disclosure must be made in the app’s description either on Facebook or other platforms it supports. Facebook says this rule change is being made so people have a clear warning the game might be eventually charging people to play it.

Facebook has also told developers they must stop incentivizing people using social plugins to like a Page. This means that people can no longer build their applications in a way that offers rewards, or gating applications on whether or not someone has liked a page. The social media giant did say that people can still incentivize logging into their app as it seems Facebook understands this is widely practiced by games on its network.

The reasoning behind these moves seems to be that Facebook wants to make sure developers are not gaming the system, and making their page get more likes by paying people to give those likes. Facebook has some pretty in-depth algorithms that judge whether or not an application is growing organically and giving away in-game currency or other benefits to users who like a page seems to be sidestepping these algorithms. Facebook’s 90 day deadline, which means developers have until November 5, will likely mean quite a few of these people will need to rethink their business model before they are no longer allowed on the social media site.




Edited by Maurice Nagle