Social Media: Facebook Shuts the Gate on 'Like Gating'

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Forcing users to like a Page before allowing them access to content is now effectively banned on Facebook.

The practice - known as 'like gating' - is a social media marketing technique used to artificially inflate likes.

The social giant buried the update in a lengthy post on its developer blog, published last week.

In Facebook's own words, "you must not incentivise people to use social plugins or to like a Page. This includes offering rewards, or gating apps or app content based on whether or not a person has liked a Page."

Facebook says the update is designed to "ensure quality connections and help businesses reach the people who matter to them, adding "we want people to like Pages because they want to connect and hear from the business."

It is still acceptable to incentivise check-ins, Page promotions and app logins.

Also mentioned in the blog post is a ban on games that feature in-app charges but fail to alert users to the fact. These games must now disclose charges in their app description.

According to Facebook, "this is to give people a clear indication that your game may charge people during gameplay."

The change in platform policy follows a raft of reports detailing children running up huge credit card bills on mobile games - because they were not aware they were paying for in-game content.

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