Tens of thousands of social media posts containing news stories from The Star News Network’s Facebook pages were temporarily deleted Wednesday.
“Hi, we are currently experiencing an issue with Facebook and because of that the sharing is stopped and your Facebook accounts are paused,” a representative from a third party software used by The Star News Network to schedule and post stories to social media said by email.
“Once we resolve this I will let you know to simply activate your Facebook accounts and all the posts will reappear again, don’t worry. Sorry about this and thank you for your patience and understanding,” the email continued.
The company did not explain exactly what the issue was.
The Star News Network uses this third party software to schedule and publish its stories on various social media platforms, including Facebook. Posts on the Facebook pages for The Tennessee Star, The Ohio Star, The Michigan Star, and The Minnesota Sun, and The Virginia Star were affected by the issue. The Georgia Star News page uses a different software, and was not affected.
“The idea that tens of thousands of posts, all of those ideas that were shared, all of the conversations that happened, all of the comments and ‘likes,’ were gone in an instant – it was shocking to think that tens of thousands of posts over a long period of time were just gone,” Christina Botteri, The Star News Network’s Executive Editor and Chief Technology Officer said.
Botteri clarified that Facebook “likes” are important not for vanity, but because Facebook prioritizes posts that receive more likes, thus allowing them to be seen by a wider audience.
She also thanked the third party software company for their responsiveness in resolving the issue.
“I appreciate the developers that I’m talking to – their work in fixing this – and I’m looking forward to all of the content on Facebook being restored,” Botteri said.
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Pete D’Abrosca is a contributor at The Star News Network. Follow Pete on Twitter. Email tips to firstname.lastname@example.org.