When Facebook Doesn’t Like Your Story Title

Sit down, take a load off and let me tell you the peculiar tale of my disappearing Facebook page. A disappearance that seems to be due to the title of my short story.

A couple of days ago I thought I would try to create a page on Facebook. I was going to try out FB advertising and I got confused and thought I needed to create a page first before advertising. Anyway, I set up the page and all seemed to be going well. Then I decided to add a couple of notes with links to my short story collection (The Sampler) and my short story (Bootleg).

Adding the note about the The Sampler wasn’t hard. It seemed to work. And then…  I added a note for Bootleg.

Bootleg is a SF comedy about aliens who spend their time stealing ideas from other civilizations.  As soon as I published the note, the page on FB vanished.

At that point I assumed that I had done something wrong. Being the technology trooper that I am, I started again.

Add the page. Check. Add information about The Sampler. Check. Page can still be viewed. Check.  Add information about Bootleg. Check. Page no longer exists. Well… f**k.

I did some research and discovered that FB has a specific page to report disappearing pages. Only it’s kind of hidden. It appears that the employees of FB have a sense of irony.

Anyway, I sent through my report about three days ago but haven’t heard back. From what I can determine, FB rarely replies to anyone unless they’re rich and/or famous and/or spend a truckload of money on advertising.

At this point, I could test my theory and create a page and not mention The Story Title That Cannot Be Named on FB. But that seems like a pointless exercise since I never wanted a page anyway. Trying again would be like proving I don’t like eating Brussels sprouts by making myself repeatedly eat Brussels sprouts.

So what is the moral of this story?

It seems that there are certain words that FB doesn’t like. Presumably FB thinks that by writing the word, Bootleg, I’m offering this as a service on the page.

I’ll still try and run an ad for The Sampler but I’m not going to have a page because I shouldn’t have to avoid mentioning The Story Title That Cannot be Named on FB.

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