Facebook is currently experiencing a bug such that when some admins of a merged Places/Pages attempt to unmerge the two presences, the Place is deleted. This can result in severed Like connections, loss of user content, and resetting of the check-in count. The bug has affected Places/Pages that merged after the Page was upgraded to yesterday’s redesign, and apparently Pages that didn’t upgrade yet as well, as the problem arose as early as February 5th.
There is a chance that Facebook may be able to restore these deleted Places. We do not know yet how many Pages are affected, but Facebook says it is currently working to solve the problem.
When Facebook originally launched Places and the ability to merge them with Places, there was no way to unmerge the two. In response to criticism and admin requests, Facebook added the option to unmerge in December.
Some admins who upgraded their Page to the redesign and then merged with a Place found they didn’t have access to all the functionality of old Pages merged with Places. They were unable to manage Facebook Deals, for instance.
Now, some of those trying to take advantage of the option to unmerge and regain control of Deals are having their Place disappear instead of becoming independent of the Page. Admins are discussing the issue on the Unmerge Places & My Business Page that initially called for the unmerge option.
One business owner reports that Facebook told her it had fixed the bug, though she still isn’t able to visit her unmerged Place. Some admins are saying the can see their missing Place in search results, but are returned the Facebook home page or an error when they try to visit. The fix may have only solved the problem for Pages with the old design.
Until the problem is resolved, admins should not try to merge or unmerge their Page and Place. We’ll update here as more information is available.
[Thanks to Eti Suruzon for the tip.]