FACEBOOK Group Management: Advice on etiquette for approving Facebook group requests

Where we discuss how to run/moderate the OSCEdays Facebook group

Current Manager of Facebook Group: @seigorobinson

###Issue 1: Advice on etiquette for approving Facebook

I recently came across a request which was someone that joined FB literally a minute or two before asking to join the Group. There was a sole profile and banner pic and I strongly suspect it’s a fake account and unlikely it was a real person.

Is it appropriate to ignore rather than approve in this case?

The argument against this action is that it’s not particularly “open” to do this but then you could argue not being an open group in itself is similar. My sense is that it is alright to do this as it is in aid of upholding the values and aims of OSCE Days - it is open to anyone that shares the OSCE Days interest / purpose.

I suspect it won’t do any harm to approve but it’s probably a bot trying to create a realistic looking profile by joining groups etc. potentially to be used for propaganda for the US election.

Any advice would be much appreciated - my expertise is on the CE side not the OS!

Jepp, I had a similar case and could not make up my mind. I did not approve her back than but not rejecting her either. After a couple of weeks I checked her profile if something had changed - it had not, so I rejected her.

But I never was really sure if this was the right decision. Maybe it is a person just interested in the news from the groups and nothing else.

Experiment, if you like, if not use the strategy I used

Maybe @cameralibre can share what he did when he was managing the group.


Well, I didn’t do a great deal of approving or rejecting people applying to join, to be honest, but I also followed Lars’ process. If it looks suspicious, wait and see, and check back a while later.
I have been much more involved in policing posts on the group, than checking members.
The process for that was as follows (using a recent example):

  1. In the group, someone posts a link to a somewhat circular economy/sustainability focused app which has no relation to open source.

  2. I check the link to make sure that it really has no element of the open source idea

  3. I delete the post

  4. I send the person who posted it a message:

"Hi, thanks for your interest and for posting in the OSCEdays group - just to let you know that we’re trying to maintain a good signal-to-noise ratio and really focus on projects and ideas which encompass ideas of both open source and circular economy, rather than sustainability and waste-reduction more generally.

The app you linked to is useful, and more people should know about it, but as it isn’t open source it’s not too relevant to the OSCEdays conversation, so I’m deleting the post.

I hope you understand and please do keep spreading good sustainable initiatives elsewhere, and if you come across projects at the intersection of OS & CE, we’d love to hear about them.

and sometimes when it was clear someone is just spamming, I also sent them a message, but more direct:

I deleted your post from the OSCEdays group because it showed no relevance at all to Open Source or Circular Economy.
please be thoughtful about posting in groups and don’t spam communities with irrelevant events!


Further to this:
There are quite a few people who want to join the group that have 0 friends but are members of groups. They often have a real looking profile so my approach has been to approve and be ready to remove if they put up inappropriate content. Some people do join FB just to follow groups rather than connect with friends.

1 Like

RE Advertising: there have been some posts that advertise circular products. While I personally do not mind promotion of CE, it is commercially focused and does not have a community / OS angle. The policy will be to delete these posts.

I was lenient on a crowd funding campaign as it seemed to be relatively aligned to OSCE but may retroactively remove if it attracts others to do similar.

1 Like

Super helpful thanks.

My approach will follow this but be slightly more lenient e.g. if it is a useful article about community focused circular economy but limited OS content I will likely leave it for informational purposes. If this seems to be abused over the longer term then it may make sense to be more draconian and put a “rules” section up to nudge people to the right behaviour

Facebook has added functionality to link relevant groups. I think it would be a really useful thing to link local organiser’s groups to the main page group.

Some of them are quite active and it would help us to understand better what is happen in active cities. I have added one as an example:

What do you think @seigorobinson?

1 Like