If you think it's time-consuming to maintain your own Facebook page, imagine how Mayor John Hickenlooper must feel. The guy's got nearly 5,000 "friends" -- or at least he will until the end of the day Tuesday, when they will all become simply "fans."
"I am deleting this personal profile at the end of the day. My apologies to anyone who has sent me a message or a friend request that I have not responded to. Please visit me on my new fan page," the mayor posted on his Facebook page today.
The reason for the change? "Personal pages on Facebook unfortunately have a limit of 5,000 friends, which we found out recently," explains Sabrina D'Agosta, deputy communications director for the mayor's office. "Having a government-official fan page will allow him to have an unlimited number of fans."
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But, don't worry, the mayor isn't going to unfriend you.
Facebook has already transitioned the mayor's friends to the fan page (which is up to 6,782 fans), D'Agosts says. But there may be glitches with the 2,000 or so people who have submitted friend requests to Hick since that happened.
In the future, Hick's staff won't have to physically approve each friend. Since fan pages allow people to sign up automatically, D'Agosta says, it will save a lot of staff time and allow the mayor to get his message out to more people.
So, will the Mayor start up a new, secret personal Facebook page with a fake name? D'Agosta says she doubts it. "There is no secret page to my knowledge," she says.