Facebook Sacrifices Burger King Application

By digitalSRC
In Social Media
Jan 19th, 2009

Facebook bans Burger King Whopper Sacrifice applicationLast week Facebook decided to remove one of the insanely popular Facebook applications sighting privacy issues. The Burger King application offered a free whopper to every Facebook users who sacrificed 10 friends by removing them from their friend’s list. The application stimulated the removal of 233,906 friends by 82,771 Facebook users in less than a week.

While apparently Facebook should be extremely happy about the success of this campaign and could have sighted this as an ideal example of how successful Facebook could be as an advertising platform, they have decided to get the application removed. When a user removes a friend this application would send a notification with the same information to the person who has been removed. This was the key viral component that caused the application to be so popular so fast; however, the FB guys saw a privacy issue in notifying the users about their removal from someone’s friends list.

Burger King Officials mentioned that though Facebook gave them the option to continue with the application with certain modifications in the way it worked, they think that these modifications would substantially remove the appeal of the application rendering it almost ineffective and so they decided to pull it off.

While I really don’t see what can be such a major privacy issue in this application, I think the Facebook guys might be a bit concerned because this application tends to violate the basic nature of any social networking site. Instead of bringing people together and increasing interaction the Burger king Facebook application motivated people to sacrifice their friends ( though you could add them back later) and the Facebook guys might have a subtle concern that this might disrupt the increasing network of users and effect the level of interaction among users in the platform.

p.s: I am not an avid Facebook user, the paragraph above is just what I personally think is a possibility. There has been no such comment from the Facebook team.

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