Facebook API Dropping "Post to Wall" Immediately

Adam DuVander
Oct. 11 2012, 05:02AM EDT

The Facebook Wall has fallen. Actually, didn't the social network lose the "wall" when it launched Timeline last year? Nevertheless, the Facebook API still had access to post updates (assuming the user gave the app permission). Effective immediately, Facebook is removing access to the writable wall, pointing developers to two alternatives that lead to less spammy outcomes.

Facebook wrote that it is "deprecating features that lead to low quality user experiences." The blog post somewhat buries the news about the wall:

Post to friends wall via the API generate a high levels of negative user feedback, including “Hides” and “Mark as Spam" and so we are removing it from the API. If you want to allow people to post to their friend’s timeline from your app, you can invoke the feed dialog. Stories that include friends via user mentions tagging or action tagging will show up on the friend’s timeline (assuming the friend approves the tag).

In fact, the post about "growing quality apps" points out just one way to automatically inject your content into a user's page: through built-in actions. The company will no longer approve apps using custom Facebook actions, a pretty big departure from where it appeared the company was going a year ago.

As far as good old fashioned wall posts, you can still achieve this by presenting users with a feed dialog, a bit of JavaScript that provides only a one click barrier between your content and the user's wall.

Photo by Dell, Inc.

Adam DuVander -- Adam heads developer relations at Orchestrate, a database-as-a-service company. He's spent many years analyzing APIs and developer tools. Previously he worked at SendGrid, edited ProgrammableWeb and wrote for Wired and Webmonkey. Adam is also the author of mapping API cookbook Map Scripting 101.

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