Yesterday, Facebook modified the Guidelines that govern how companies can run or advertise sweepstakes, contests, and other promotions on the Facebook platform. Following is a summary of the key provisions:
- Promotions on Facebook must be administered within Apps on Facebook.com, either on a Canvas Page or an app on a Page Tab. You cannot use Facebook features or functionality as an entry mechanism. For example, you cannot give people entries simply by liking a page.
- You must make certain disclosures. For example, you must disclose that the promotion is not sponsored by Facebook, that entrants are not providing information to Facebook, and that entrants release Facebook of liability. You cannot use Facebook’s name or trademarks other than to make those disclosures.
- You cannot condition entry upon a person taking any action using Facebook features or functionality, other than liking a Page, checking in to a Place, or connecting to your app. For example, you cannot condition entry upon a person uploading a photo on a Wall.
- You cannot notify winners through Facebook, such as through Facebook messages, chat, or posts on profiles or Pages.
The complete Guidelines are available here. Keep in mind that complying with the Guidelines does not guarantee that a promotion will be lawful. As Facebook points out, “promotions are subject to many regulations and if you are not certain that your promotion complies with applicable law, please consult with an expert.”