Facebook has updated its user flow for reporting fake or abusive accounts to include clearer options that could improve the level of feedback Facebook receives.
It’s unclear exactly when Facebook made this change, but now when users click “Report/block” from a user’s Timeline, they have the option to fill out a detailed report, as seen below. Users can select multiple reasons and confirm their report before sending it. There’s also an option to share additional information in a text field later in the flow.
Previously, Facebook presented some of these options under drop down menus that users might not have seen. Now it’s more intuitive and efficient to indicate what the problem with an account might be. This is the former report dialog:
Facebook estimates that 5 or 6 percent of its more than 900 million monthly active users are false or duplicate accounts. The social network has a number of systems in place to detect fake accounts, including looking at the rate of accepted and rejected friend requests, but manual user reports are an important part of discovering and eliminating those accounts. We’ve also heard that if an account is connected to several other accounts that have been reported, Facebook takes that as an indication that the account might also be a fake.
Removing false or abusive accounts is critical for Facebook to maintain a level of trust and usefulness for users. It is also important to give users the sense that their reports have an impact. Earlier this year, Facebook introduced a “support dashboard” for users to track the progress of their reports, and last year the company added several features to help users deal with unwanted photo tags and bullying posts.
Facebook shared a diagram of how its reporting system works here.