Last Spring Facebook changed their giveaway and promotion guidelines.
Though the changes should have had a fairly dramatic impact on the way bloggers handle giveaways and promotions, they don’t seem to have trickled down to everyone. Maybe it’s because of the legal speak that permeates the page…
In any event, I thought it may be time to have a discussion. So here we go…
Facebook Giveaway Rules
I. Promotions on Facebook must be administered within Apps on Facebook.com, either on a Canvas Page or an app on a Page Tab.
You cannot run a giveaway or promotion on your wall. You must use a third-party application to administer your contest. There are several companies who provide this service for a fee, or you can learn how to create your own tab in i-Frames.
II. Promotions on Facebook must include the following:
- A complete release of Facebook by each entrant or participant.
- Acknowledgment that the promotion is in no way sponsored, endorsed or administered by, or associated with, Facebook.
- Disclosure that the participant is providing information to [disclose recipient(s) of information] and not to Facebook.
If you do utilize an app and run a promotion, Facebook wants to be sure the participants know that they are in no way any part of your promotion.
III. You must not use Facebook features or functionality as a promotion’s registration or entry mechanism. For example, the act of liking a Page or checking in to a Place cannot automatically register or enter a promotion participant.
You cannot ask people to like your page, comment on your wall, share your status or write a status update on their own wall as a primary or secondary entry. This means that you cannot host a giveaway on your blog and ask people to “like” your Facebook page as an additional entry.
If a company request that you ask for likes on their page as a condition of entry. Tell them no and point them to Facebook’s promotion guidelines. A request like this could result in the deletion of both your page and theirs.
Still skeptical? Read this blogger’s exchange with a Facebook employee regarding the promotion guidelines.
IV. You must not notify winners through Facebook, such as through Facebook messages, chat, or posts on profiles or Pages.
You cannot notify your winners that they’ve won a giveaway via Facebook. Notify them by email, twitter, however you want just as long as it’s not on Facebook.
V. You may not use Facebook’s name, trademarks, trade names, copyrights, or any other intellectual property in connection with a promotion or mention Facebook in the rules or materials relating to the promotion.
Don’t tie Facebook to a giveaway on your site in any way. Say you’ve reached 10,000 likes and you want to celebrate with a giveaway on your blog. Don’t call it your “Awesome Facebook Fans Giveaway.”
There are several more guidelines included in the description. If you’re really interested in using Facebook as a forum for giveaway promotion, make sure you read them thoroughly.
UPDATED. Facebook shared this promotions guidelines training video. You might want to take a peak at it if things are still a little fuzzy.
What Happens if I Violate the Rules
Facebook has started cracking down on pages that violate its giveaway and promotion rules. Don’t run the risk of having your page deleted.
General Giveaway Information
Giveaways can be tricky in general. Make sure you understand giveaway laws.
What do you think about Facebook’s promotion rules? Were you already aware of the specifics? While we’re at it, what do you think about giveaways in general?