Update on Voter Turnout Numbers for Ratification of New Facebook Terms

Four days into the seven day voting period on Facebook’s new governing documents, 290,000 Facebook users have turned out to vote. Currently, votes for the proposed (revised) governing documents lead votes for the current terms of service 73% – 27%, a ratio that has held since just after voting began.

At the current rate, about 500,000 people will vote by the time the voting period ends on Thursday. A turnout in that ballpark would reach about 1% of the 60 million vote threshold Facebook set at the outset of the vote needed for the outcome to be binding. Nevertheless, Facebook is very likely to adopt the new governing documents anyway.

For its part, Facebook is promoting the vote heavily, including messages at the top of everyone’s profile page, Facebook ads, and enabling users to post their vote to their profile for friends to see in their stream. So far, about 1.4 million people have visited the Facebook Site Governance voting application, but only 20% of those who visited the app have logged a vote.

While Facebook’s decision to revert its terms of service a few weeks ago and propose a new way of updating its TOS proved great fodder for the press, it appears that most Facebook users simply do not feel strongly enough about the proposed changes to the terms to participate.