It looks like Facebook PR is getting sick of bloggers and reporters who don’t call them to fact check before writing stories, specifically the popular blog TechCrunch. In a post late yesterday, titled “Yeah Ok, So Facebook Punk’d Us,” editor Michael Arrington lays out how TechCrunch reporter Jason Kincaid fell for a Facebook PR prank.
Long story short, Facebook added a fake feature, “Fax This Photo” below all pictures, that only TechCrunch employees could see. Noticing the new feature, Kincaid emailed Facebook for comment. When he didn’t hear back from them after 25-minutes, he posted: “Facebook Now Lets You Fax Your Photos. I Have No Idea Why Anyone Would Want To Do This.”
Of course, about an hour later, Facebook PR confirmed the hoax to Kincaid, which was then followed by the update post by Arrington. Would something like this fly with The New York Times? Definitely not, as The Business Insider’s Nicholas Carlson pointed out (see comments). However, was it a funny way to remind TechCrunch to call sources before posting? Yes.