Is Facebook’s New Credibility Score A Popularity Contest?

facebook logo Facebook is finally going to unveil the bigger and better new version of their social commenting plugin. The new now old version was updated in October and gave us the ability to vote up or down a comment. The new version of the social commenting plugin is its own entire commenting system like a Disqus or Comment Luv. A new comment system? Do we need one? Well Facebook thinks so and according to according to CNET,

“Facebook will be able to power the entire commenting system–handling the log-in and publishing, cross-promoting comments on individuals’ Facebook walls, and possibly even promoting them as well on media outlets’ own “fan” pages. Undoubtedly, the Facebook “like” button will be deeply integrated as well.”

The cross promoting onto walls and fan pages is definitely going to be enticing to brands as this helps with interaction. It brings the discussion off the blog and onto the Facebook page. Facebook has once again see the opportunity to bring people back onto to Facebook through the popularity of blogs. The new commenting system is not just limited to comments. It also comes with a credibility score.

Facebook’s new Credibility Score – A Popularity Contest?

Facebook’s new and improved comment system is incorporating a credibility score. Yes. Another number to measure us. The credibility score is a percentage of how credible you are in your comments. Ok. How does it measure this? According to Josh Constine on Inside Facebook, the score is calculated:

“…using the formula (total Likes – total instances marked as unhelpful or spam) / total Likes. For instance, a commenter who has had their comments Liked seven times and been marked as unhelpful once would have the equation (7 – 1) /7, which equates to 85%. Scores are rounded down and are higher than the equation specifies when there are less than five Likes.”

The score is found when you mouse over the user in the commenting system. So if you are commenting a lot and people like you and the comment, your credibility is deemed higher. If you are not well liked, then you may want to avoid commenting on the blogs that use this system as your credibility will be low. Does this number matter? To some, very much. If you are given a lower credibility percentage then the users and admins will consider you not credible or reputable. You can be marked as unhelpful and even spam. This matters as if you are a spammer you are running the risk of being banned from Facebook.

facebook credibility score percentage

photo credit: Inside Facebook

Facebook Commenting System – Weeding out the spammers?

We know that on the current commenting systems that despite how hard we try, the spammers come in. It happens. Will it happen as much with Facebook’s commenting system? Of course it will but is the risk being a spammer and banned from Facebook a deterrent to spammers? Users have to use their real account to log in. We know that this is not fool proof as there will be fake accounts created and those will be banned. If they are linked to a real account, that user will be banned as well. It is not fool proof however, it is harder to have a fake account.

facebook credibility score mark as spam

photo credit: Inside Facebook

Now, there are some that could care less if they are banned from Facebook but for others who are active users and also if this commenting system does perform well, banned Facebook users will be unable to comment on blogs that have integrated this system. If a blog has integrated the Facebook commenting system will we see where people will comment more or less on the blog? We will see both I am sure. If people get a high credibility score, we know that they will continue to comment so they can grow their score. This is not necessarily bad as comments on blog create some sensational discussions, as we have seen.

I see the problem with the credibility score being where people like a comment so theirs will be liked back. Credibility and influence are not a mathematics game. It is something that we build and earn not from people trying to game the system. I guess no score is ever perfect and this may or may not have any impact upon us but that is yet to be seen.

What do you think? Is it a popularity contest or is the credibility score valid?

Facebook logo sticker photo credit: jaycameron
  • It is amazing to watch the facebook team continue to innovate (or duplicate as in this example). But I have to ask, what are the costs? In the last year it seems like FB is intent on competing with Google. Both companies are expanding their services and product offerings at breakneck speeds and as they do more cracks become appearent in both companies’ seemingly flawless execution.

    Google checkins and FB commenting systems – eh, does it really matter or are both companies losing the focus the once had? Are they risking losing users? I am not sure about Google, but if I didn’t need my FB account for work, I would seriously consider deleting it.

    What about you? Are you worried about FB’s direction? Is there a better alternative?

    • Jason

      I see it as a new way for FB to open up privacy, We know with like and link that we are linked to that page but still somewhat are afforded the privacy of the opt in. By signing in to a blog that uses this commenting system we are more than likely giving up the opt in. For me I use FB more personal than business. Not the best use of time but yet with a child and living far from family and friends it is the means of communication.

      I do not see them on losing focus as much as gaining. FB wants to be the one and while they really need Google for this, they went to Bing (which of course we have learned is taking results from Google). Reality is that Google v Facebook is a provider of results that people/businesses spend countless hours to be ranked on vs people that are there to catch up and have conversations. So different but yet equally as complicated.

      Better alternative? not sure. I like Disqus so will the allure of the comments going to a fan page stray me? Not sure as I have to see the results and impact before I jump in.

      • Unfortunately I have ended up using facebook as a hybrid platform – a mix of work and personal life. This probably isn’t the best use of the platform, I know. I would prefer to simply use LinkedIn; however so many people I know at work only use facebook. Even when I have attempted to stop doing this, I have gotten a little push back.

        My solution has been to carefully use facebook’s privacy options and assign everyone to groups. It adds a bit of work on my side, but it helps.

        With us on the verge of having our own family, I will probably using facebook a bit more. It is the platform everyone uses. 500 million+ people can’t possibly be wrong. 🙂

  • Pingback: Is Facebook’s New Credibility Score A Popularity Contest? | The World Matters()