A tale of Facebook Captivity, Identity Crisis, and Redemption
Background: My school newspaper had a Facebook profile with 200 friends. We wanted to change from a profile (Mr. Corsair) to a page (The Corsair) without starting over from the beginning. Facebook has an option to convert a profile to a page, thereby converting your friends into likes. We did that and thankfully, unlike many others who lost content or likes in the process of converting, everything went smoothly.
Problem: Once the profile was converted, and I got our spanking new page, something was wrong. When I logged into Facebook, it opened right to The Corsair page, but I could only post or comment on our own page. I couldn’t search, or interact with other pages at all. No liking, sharing or commenting. It was like being in one of those interrogation rooms with the one sided window. I could yell and make faces as much as I wanted, but I had no clue what was going on outside that room.
Normally, you can use Facebook either as your profile or as your page, switching back and forth as you please. You do that by choosing ‘Use Facebook As Page’ or ‘Use Facebook as Profile’ in the dropdown menu from the top blue bar. I kept trying to do that but no matter how many times I hit ‘Use Facebook as The Corsair’, nothing happened. The screen just stared at me kind of blankly.
Strangely, although I logged into Facebook as The Corsair, when I was on a site that used Facebook commenting, I was Mr. Corsair. It was like my page couldn’t figure out who it was. But how could that be? I wondered, Mr. Corsair no longer exists. Light bulb! Mr. Corsair no longer exists!
It dawns on me: If Mr. Corsair no longer exists, then I have a page without an owner. After some searching I discovered that indeed, according to Facebook’s rules you need a personal account to create a page. You can’t only have a business (page) account. But now what was I to do? The conversion process was legit, and many people had done it before me so what had I done wrong?
Solution: With the help of this handy guide and its very helpful author, I discovered that the very simple solution: Create a new admin. Once a new admin is created, the page has an owner. I created a new account, appointed it admin, and hallelujah – my page was freed from its peculiar Facebook hell. Just in time for the new semester.
Moral: Make sure you have an additional admin, other than the profile you will be converting, before the conversion process.
And that despite all the time and all the very nasty messages I intended to never send to Facebook, I’m glad I found this answer in a pretty circuitous way – because that’s how you learn.
Guest Blogger Chavi Gourarie is a writer and SEO consultant, living in Los Angeles. She thinks too much and eats too little and can be found on Twitter as @chavarisa.