FaceBook Enacts Witch Hunt! by Author, Silver RavenWolf


facebookburningFaceBook Enacts Witch Hunt — On October 16th FB demanded I put my “real” name on my personal account. At that point I had to make a choice — ditch over 4,600 people on my personal account and 17,000 followers by refusing, or change my name. If I did not change my name — right then and there — I would be booted off FaceBook.  Most frustrating, there was no contact information to argue the point. I know that there are several people who count on my daily posts, and I felt it was my responsibility to continue — so, I sighed, put my real name in the box and hit the button.

Once I was cleared to get into my own account, I posted that I had been hit by the FB Troll  (someone who indicates you are not in compliance with company policies — and in this case, the newly enacted policy that you can’t use an undocumented name) and that I would contemplate what I wanted to do about it. When I came to the realization that many magickal people had gone through, or are going through this same problem with FaceBook, it became evident to me that something very evil was definitely brewing. Realizing that I alone was not being affected, that hundreds of people were experiencing the same difficulty — I decided to stand my ground and fight.

In the meantime, I asked any magickal folks on my personal page to “unfriend” me if they were using their spiritual names so that they would not be targeted. I also changed my settings in an effort to protect my friends.

As of today I have been unsuccessful in contacting FB.  The company has pulled telephone access to the general public and provides no contact information that I could find. They want to use the public; but, they have insulated themselves against that public.

Over the last week I’ve received many e-mails and posts about individuals who have been targeted — radio show hosts, tattoo artists, writers, singers, Native Americans, etc. — not just magickal people; but, many others as well.  But, more worrisome? Many of the individuals indicated they fought FaceBook and lost, that the experience was painful and upsetting, and that they were treated unkindly by FB employees. One woman won by getting her attorney involved, and then was targeted a second time. We have a bigger issue here — a corporate entity that uses people and their personal lives as a product, and who feels they can dictate the lives and choices of those same people. They have no right to do so. Yes, it is a free service. Yes, all internet involvement is a risk. However, with anything any of us do — we have a responsibility for what we create. FB is purposefully putting the safety and security of individuals at risk — and that is unconscionable.   Not only that, they have no respect for those of us who fall into subculture or sub-groups (musicians, artists, writers, LBGT community, and the minority religions).  Put bluntly — if you don’t fit the model — the FaceBook model — you are undesirable and must be made to conform.

One argument I’ve heard is that the original FaceBook platform indicated one must use their real name — however; times have changed since the birth of FaceBook, and you happily accepted the throngs that migrated from other social networks to yours without enforcing your own rules. FaceBook today is a far different animal than when it first started, and therefore requires adjustment in a way that fits its tremendous growth without sacrificing the privacy of its users.

The excuse that once your “real” name is on your personal page that you can adjust your settings to private and therefore be ensured of your safety is ridiculous.  Nothing, and I mean nothing, is safe on the net.  Ever.  The human condition adores a secret — it never rests.   Gossips never cease.  Hackers will never quit.  Stalkers will continue to stalk.  Religious zealots will keep up their harassment and discrimination tactics — and FaceBook?  You just let that door swing wide open.  Witches, Wiccans, and Pagans are still targeted today — and you just declared open season on them.

I agree that an attempt at protection on the net is necessary — but, rather than using the public to rat on each other by pushing a button, why not require a form that is private (sic), still allowing the individual to use whatever name they please on their personal page?  To ask for a drivers’ license, marriage certificate, social security number, paycheck stub, etc, (which is what FaceBook is doing) is unconscionable!  A free service wanting valuable and private information?  For what?  You are not a bank, the government, nor state service entity.  You, nor your employees, have no right to view any of these private documents, let alone keep copies of them.  You are a corporation — making money freely on your product —

which happens to be us — the general public — which you are getting for FREE.

Free to use the data you collect for target advertising, for growth in revenue, and statistical analysis that can even move into the realms of the study of human behavior and psychology, let alone tuning to the amazing marketing information that even someone as small and as insignificant as myself can see.  You are sitting on a gold mine — and you want to increase it.

Gold mines do run dry.

As an aside, I have very much enjoyed reading the feed (which is not available on a professional page) of my fans and readers on my personal page.  I know when they are sad, hurt, angry, or in need.  I know when their pets pass away, when a family member falls desperately ill, when they marry or give birth to a child.  I value this window into the lives of my friends — it allows me to celebrate their triumphs and to mourn with them when death takes a beloved soul.  And for each and every one?  I pray.  That’s right, I sit at my computer and I ask that whatever runs this universe to smile down upon them — to give them laughter, to give them joy, to give them hope.  I can’t do that on your Professional page.  You want to force me to be clinical, to be business-like, to once again…fit your model.  I don’t want to give up this connection with my “friends”.

I wrote to you once (when you could actually do that) asking that you up the cap of friends (you can only have 5,000 on a personal page).  I gave you sound business reasons for doing this.

Of course, you never answered.

I changed my name thirty years ago for religious purposes and to protect my family. Only three people in my life ever use my given name.  Three.  Just three.  Everyone else calls me “Silver RavenWolf” and that is who I shall continue to be.  Yesterday, I had to un-friend my own husband on my personal FaceBook Page so that he would not experience discrimination on his job. Protecting me FaceBook? Protecting your pockets and padding your bank account is more like it. To my FB Friends, my friends on Twitter, Instagram, Linked-In, and Tumbler, WordPress — please sign the petition if you find it in your heart to do so. If we stand together? We can make a difference.

Tis the Season of the Witch — They think we don’t really matter…that we have no power…that we are a silly minority that dresses in black and prances around uttering gibberish and baying at the moon.  Let’s just show them how plain our words can be — sign

The Petition

and share.  Share, share, share this article.

“All that is necessary for the triumph of evil is that good men do nothing. ” – Edmund Burke.  I’d like to amend this a bit — “All that is necessary for the triumph of evil is that good Witches do nothing.”

 

Please make a difference.  So be it.

https://www.change.org/p/facebook-stop-closing-people-s-accounts-who-change-their-name-for-religious-reasons-3

Silver Ravenwolf, popular Llewellyn author, has written over 21 books on the subjects of Witchcraft, Wicca, Pow-Wow, Angels and Magick. She has extensively toured the United States, giving seminars and lectures about magickal religions and practices. She has been interviewed by the New York Times, the Wall Street Journal, the US News & World Report and appeared on the A&E Biography channel as an expert in Witchcraft and Wicca. Silver is the Tradition Head of the Black Forest Clan that includes 100 covens in 19 states, Canada and Italy.

http://www.silverravenwolf.info

http://www.crowcrossroads.etsy.com

http://twitter.com/silverravenwolf

 

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73 thoughts on “FaceBook Enacts Witch Hunt! by Author, Silver RavenWolf”

  1. I don’t belong to FB, but If I did I will tell them to kiss my red rosy! No one but no one will ever make me feel inferior because I am a witch. If they don’t agree with who I am, they don’t have to friend me. And neither should you.

    1. The only Reason I’m on ..as I refer to it ” the Gossip and complain whiney site” IS to read articles like yours along with Reiki and Crystal information..very very rarely do I ever post or chat with anyone. Mostly send good wishes to family & friends. The whole site has become government controlled and they snoop and watch everything you say or do..becoming a communist site of B/S. I think I just may be cancelling my F/B. Too many negative vibes and people.. You Rock Raven and don’t back down because of some Unworthy money grubbing fools, remember don’t give them your time or energy…

  2. I was sneaky on Facebook. I have two accounts. One of them is Hecate Moonwolf and I’m daring Facebook to take that away. I use that name so that my mother, who is anti-magickal anything, won’t find me. The other one is Artemis Volino. So far I haven’t gotten any nasty things but I just wish they would stop asking for my phone number.

  3. It is unbelievable to see such protocols being applied with such arrogance and carelessness. And it is even more unbelievable to see how the majority of people accept anything they are asked to do without saying a word. Thank you for bringing this up dearest Silver Raven Wolf. Yes, gold mines do run dry in time as the Universe and Mother Earth keep their eternal dance going. Many though are not aware of that. Soon or later they will wake up. Blessed be. Theseus

  4. I appreciate so much that, as a leader of our community, you promote this fight. I’ve signed the petition and support to all those involved therein and all those who are being discriminated and are losing their accounts.
    Anyway, I will not pray for a business to make money at my expense imposing their conditions. There are other platforms on which stay in touch with my digital friends. But if I have learned in these 10 years on the Internet is that nothing is forever, I think MySpace know what I mean. Tell me how I can help. Blessings.

  5. I was hoping you were going to post on WordPress. I did not want comment on FB. I am thinking of leaving FB because I can’t stand all the advertisements and how much control they have over what I see on my feed. Yes it is good to be in contact with people but at what expense? There are other ways to be in communication with my internet friends, like WordPress.
    FB is all about money and greed. They could careless about the people who use their product or why they use it. They need an accurate count of how many people are on FB to report back to there stockholders and the companies who advertise on FB. When FB went public, I knew things were going to change. FB only cares about their stocks, not the people who use their product. Their religion is capitalism and their God is money. I really don’t want anything to do with that religion. I signed

  6. Maybe we should all switch to the Google social media site in protest. I actually have 2 FB accounts under different email addresses. One is for the “real” me and the other uses my spiritual name for the same reasons that you stated. I’m not ashamed of my beliefs. I just feel some people wouldn’t understand and my family would suffer. So far FB hasn’t figured out my alias. Thanks for the heads up!

  7. I was also someone who lost their name (this one) on Facebook on August 29th. I was able to get it back one week ago. I blogged about it twice, but there are ways that you can get your name back. I suspect, since you are someone who has been writing under this name you would be able to get your name back in the same way I did. Because of that history, Facebook is doing a case-by-case assessment of each loss of name. I blogged about it here with instructions on how to get your name back. There is also a link to the earlier blog post where I name the culprit who doxed me.

    http://fannyfae.com/2014/10/21/losing-your-facebook-name-getting-it-back-it-isnt-really-about-you/

  8. I am in complete and utter disbelief that something like this is occurring.
    Silver, several years ago you helped my husband and I with our handfasting and I have been a loyal reader of yours for as long as I have been following the path, what is happening now is beyond wrong.
    What happened to religious freedoms, freedom of choice..???
    We will fight the good fight and hope that somehow it makes a difference!

  9. Honestly I don’t understand why that can be done to you. Silver Ravenwolf is a legal name for you. All your books are published in that name. What the hell is happening in this world, this is a social network and anonymity is crucial to some people no way should ANYONE be asked or rather demanded to produce information they are not willing to share.

  10. I’m SO sorry this is happening to a WONDERFUL person like you Silver. And to many others. I’m deleted my Facebook months ago cause of their so called privacy issues. And I don’t miss it. People act like they don’t have time for you if your not on Facebook. But if I’m not worth an email or a call them I don’t need one in my life anyway. You made ALOT of GREAT points in this post! I’m blessed that I have Twitter and other ways to keep in touch with you. I hope you have a great day and I love you!

      1. Have you ever heard of fuBAR? It is a version of facebook that started as a site for gamer friends. Their rules are very basic and they do not care what your name is. it is also free and rather pagan friendly users too.

  11. Silver

    I am wi th you 100%. My Elder, Starr Ravenhawk has been having a similar issue as yours. She too lost her page. She too has been using her name for over 30 years. Her legal name is rarely used except in the business world, other than that, everyone calls her Starr. It is an outrage what FB is doing. I have been sharing the petition like crazy and have personally had almost 20 people sign it. It is amazing that some people can be so negative about this. There have been arguments on a few of the places I posted because people have said that “these are the rules on FB and you need to put your big girl pants on.” I was also told it all started bease of “Christian Day” which I also don’t believe. It is just amazing that people can be cruel and mean about this. It is an important issue. The best of luck to you.

    Oh, and PS, i have been sharing your article above as well.

    1. Christian Day may not have started this, but he DID give Facebook the names of many folks who were using their magical names. In other words, he broke one of the most basic rules of the Craft, you do not out your brothers and sisters of the Craft. At least that was the oath I took at my initiation.

      1. Good question. He got into an argument in a FB group and reported everyone who disagreed with him. Sorry but that seriously crossed by witch line. Do a Google search, he did some other horrid things at the same time. Do your own research and then make up your own mind.

  12. I am going to re-post this on my fb wall, and some pagan pages as well… we will get the word out!!! Blessings, and keep fighting the good fight!!!

  13. I can’t BELIEVE crap like this still happens…
    Our forefathers have rolled so much in their graves that they’ve fallen apart due to the mutilation of the Bill of Rights. Some days, it seems that the only thing that’s changed since the Witch Trials, the Spanish Inquisition, etc, is simply our fashion sense…
    I don’t have a FB, but I did sign this very worthwhile petition, & have passed it on to my husband to sign & share on his FB. I hope this discrimination & harassment ceases! I hope & pray the petition makes a better difference for the FB community. Blessed Be & Good Luck to you all. )0(

  14. I stand behind Silver and the others. FB has already messed with us time and time again, giving out our personal information and all the stinking advertisements.

  15. A question only each of us can answer for ourselves…is it really worth staying on FB?

    For you, Silver, it may be. FB’s reach is so damn huge, it makes easier for fans to “find” and reach out to you. I’d like to think that’s the only kind of “finding” you’ll enjoy through FB, but truth be told, as liberal and lovely as our neighbors may seem, history teaches us witches make great scapegoats and burn as easily as wood. I don’t blame you for not wanting your personal name out there.

    It looks like some others here have fought and won and posted how they did it. You can do it too!

    In the meantime, make sure you disable the geo-tagging on your camera and phone before uploading pics on FB and hide your personal information so no one can just look up where you live.

  16. This was news a month or so back when San Francisco drag queens were inundated with demands that they use their real names on their pages and not their performance names. A couple of months before that, I received a notice from Facebook saying that I had to change my name because they “knew” it wasn’t my real name. I was using my nickname as my middle name but there was really no way they could prove it wasn’t my real name. “Gypsy” could have been the choice of a Bohemian hippie couple, for all they knew.

    In Section 4 (Registration and Account Security) of the Terms of Service we all accept when we create accounts with Facebook, it clearly states that:

    Facebook users provide their real names and information, and we need your help to keep it that way. Here are some commitments you make to us relating to registering and maintaining the security of your account:

    1. You will not provide any false personal information on Facebook, or create an account for anyone other than yourself without permission.

    It sucks, but I went back to look for it after they made me change my name.

    I wish there was a better alternative but until one comes along, I guess this is it.

  17. More people need to realize the fact that fb is using them as a product to turn a profit and drop the service. Keep up your fight and getting this info out, there are plenty of people who support you.

  18. Silver, I signed. I agree with you whole-heartedly! Blessed Be Sister!!!

  19. I called that policy as Nazi…. Who are they so I need to give them ID? I will understood to block fake celebrity accounts, by demand celebrity which give them they ID… everything else is BS… They block my SL acc.. I open new…

  20. Who gives a rats ass what name you put on FB! Half of the accounts get hacked, even if you put a name on it, who says it’s your real name! FB is for socializing not complying. Silver, I think you need to show some type of paperwork that your magikal name is on as proof and leave it! I don’t use my real name, it just looks like a real name, this is getting rediculous. Good luck with everything and I love your page!!

  21. Reblogged this on Daughter of Avalon and commented:
    I think this is horrendous! Silver, and many like her, use their Magickal or Author names on Facebook as they do not wish for abuse or reprisals for their loved ones from trolls, online bullies and potential stalkers. If they have proof that they use the name in a regular or professional manner they should be permitted – it’s like wordpress forcing me to use my legal name rather than Breaca. I hope it can get sorted!

  22. We were already targeted: Those with virtual identities whose friends know us by. They’ve apologized to drag queens so far, but not too many else. I used to click through ads for neat shirts or even once tickets to see Dr John. I will not click any ads since I was forced to put another name in to continue.

  23. The troll got me the other day!!! I had been logged in for about a week. I needed to reboot my browser for an update and upon return, Facebook asked me to verify my identity. So I went from Kai-Ocean Wyndsong to my “legal” name. Now, as a survivor of molestation, rape and other sexual abuse, I chose to use my spirit name on FB as a means to keep my privacy. I also have a professional page under Wyndsong Designs, which all my followers and customers know me as Kai. As a result of this demand from FB. I now have exposure to said previous predators and have confused the heck out of my professional community.

    Thanks for standing up Silver and the petition has been signed!!

    1. I read your post on a radio show I did tonight (minus your name-s) trying to impress listeners how this rule by FB can harm the innocent. Many thanks for your bravery in posting.

  24. This began hitting the drag queen community and the Sisters of Perpetual Indulgence, of which my boyfriend is becoming a member. But they’d pushed me to use a ‘real name’ instead of my craft name long ago, so I gave them the fake last name Bear. When I stood up for the sisters, that troll hit me, and even that name was taken from me. But here’s where they hurt me and acted like absolutely uncaring asses about it.

    Like many of the LGBT community, I am avoiding abusive family members and trying to recover from PTSD. I do not need contact from them. They do not know where I live. So when Facebook finally publicly apologized for the name policy’s harm, I went ahead and gave them a photo of my ID, but specifically said not to put that name on my profile. This is after they admitted they knew that it was harmful, and apologized.

    The evidence was clear that they DID get my note, but they DID put my ‘real name’ on the account anyway, exposing me to the public and risking my being found. I had to delete the account. I was furious. I got it all in screenshots:
    http://rayredspider.blogspot.com/2014/10/furious-with-facebook-exposing-me-like.html

    Facebook seriously just needs to wither away in the internet’s past. Come to Google+ and Diaspora and tell these people you no longer want anything to do with Facebook…… the Wal-Mart of the internet.

  25. My fb name is SeeIfYou CanGuess and I’ve never had any problems with it. Been that way for yrs now. I also read that they were lifting the policy for Wiccan members recently. Hope they leave you alone!

  26. Signed! Ridiculous that you can publish a book under your name, but not have a FB account. They’re taking themselves way too seriously. Oh- and I absolutely adore you!!!! Your books have meant so much to me for so many years.

  27. Signed sealed and delivered. I am so sorry to hear Facebook has done this to you. I have been following you for a long time and think you are incredible in so many ways. Keep fighting the good fight for all witches, pagans, native americans and all who have changed or use alternative names…Blessed Be, Silver Ravenwolf

  28. “…and in this case, the newly enacted policy that you can’t use an undocumented name.” Well, I just skimmed this to see if it was worth reading before bothering to get into depth and this one part of your entire article makes it obvious you’re not able to comment on this issue since you don’t know what you’re talking about. See, when I joined Facebook four years ago, I actually skimmed over the Terms of Service, and would you believe that using your real name was in the Terms of Service four years ago? Well, just for the record, it was.

    The thing is, Facebook is a privately run company and domain online. They make the rules. They can delete everyone on Facebook who doesn’t have a picture of themselves standing on their head if they want since that is their legal right. People get so entitled thinking that because it’s something that people use every day, that it’s as public as a park bench. But it’s not, which is why there’s Terms of Service. If you don’t know what they are, I suggest looking them up. But Facebook is certainly not “witch hunting” or even discriminating against anyone’s religion since they’re doing this to Drag Queens and Native Americans as well as a christian friend of mine who had a page for his church. Clearly not just pagans or witches. I believe this is what people call “the victim card.” Either that or it’s just plain ignorance since you’re either purposely or accidentally ignoring the truth behind the matter.

  29. We are with you silver ravenwolf. You have been an inspiration and a guide on my path and many others we are in this fight with you

  30. Facebook is not a Blog site nor is it intended to be used as such. Use your reak name os have your name changed. You are using their product for free and you think you have the right to tell them what rules they can have? Your wrong. Have you “Readers” follow you to a site that is intended for the reasons you are using FB for and stop trying to tell someone how to run their product and company. Having said that. I don’t blame you for being upset. If a company makes or produces a product I do not like, I don’t try to tell them to make it the way I like/want it, I use a different product.

    As much as you want to think you are, you are not special nor should you be treated like you are. Follow the rules or play somewhere else.

  31. Here’s what I find interesting. I posted a comment not long ago, which was moderated (apparently) and not allowed to be posted. I mentioned how whether we like it or not, Facebook has the right to do this since it’s a private company, how they have been doing this for years and in fact you sign a contract when you join Facebook stating that you will use your real name. You come on here whining and complaining because you don’t like Facebook enforcing their rules that you agreed to, calling it “a witch hunt” but then when someone corrects you and says that they’re doing it to everyone (not just pagans), you censor them. You refuse to allow anyone to see the truth behind the matter which you’re entirely making up. Silver, there’s a reason you’re hated by a grand majority of the pagan community (Hell, all you have to do is look up “Silver Ravenwolf” and half of what you find on Google denounces you and decries your writing) and playing the victim card because you can’t read or want attention or whatever is ridiculous. I’m against this idiotic rule myself but riling people up who clearly don’t know the facts is a christian tactic, not one of a pagan who is supposed to be better than that.

  32. To solve your problem create a fan page with your Silver Ravenwolf name. Change your private page to your real name and take it complete private if privacy is what you’re concerned about. Making a mountain out of a mole hill doesnt make you look like a leader. It makes you look like a cry baby. Get out of the medieval mind set of believing you’re persecuted and oppressed and learn to create unity and harmony in the here and now.

  33. Reblogged this on Abode of a Blind Asatruar and commented:
    While I find the whole idea of this situation with Facebook forcefully outing people’s private and personal information such as their legal information being twisted into some sort of focused attack specifically targeted against people from the Heathen and Pagan communities quite distasteful and highly misleading, I plan on signing the petition as soon as I can figure out how to navigate and utilize the website in question with my screen reader.

    I will sign it not because I believe it is some sort of witch hunt against anyone who is Heathen, Pagan, Wiccan, etc., but because I’m an activist who realizes that forcing people to use their legal names on such a hugh and public social website such as Facebook can and is dangerous for anyone who has reason to hide their personal information – Such as protecting themselves from stalkers, abusers, and anyone who would attempt to hurt them for their religious or political beliefs, or the gender of preferred partners, among other valid and important reasons for using an alternative persona.

  34. WOW! I can’t believe Facebook has resorted to that. Luckily, I had starting distrusting Facebook and felt that having an account with them is becoming dangerous. I had no clue about this until I saw a link to this post. Thanks for informing the non-FB users. I was considering going back, but I am not now. I have been Facebook-free since September 3rd and I aim to stay free from it! This is a very serious matter, and something needs to be done. Facebook has no right..

  35. Silverravenwolf is a documented name since 1) you changed your birth name to it for religious reasons, 2) As a widely published author it is known as your pen name and is documented in that way, 3) Federal taxes are applied to your pen name for ech year, therefore Facebook is in the wrong. I would contact a lawyer about this matter or as some suggested make your real name a private account( somewhat useless if only 3 people know your real birthname) and change the Silverravenwolf acount to a “bussiness account. I myself have both a public access account using real name and an account for my business name.

  36. The only times I’ve ever seen this enforced is against oppressed populations. Against people with legitimate reasons to be using a different name, whether for their own protection, for fear of discrimination, for gender-related issues… Never does FB enforce this against the kids goofing around and making accounts for fictional characters.

  37. My sister was hit with a name change as well. She doesn’t know who dimed her out. She used her “alias” so to speak, to protect her & her young SN son from her severely abusive ex whom had previously threatened their lives. There’s no level of “security” settings to keep him from creating an alias account to stalk & torture her. I was LIVID and sent a very heated email to FB about jeopardizing not only my sister’s life, but my 5yr old nephew as well.

  38. I got hit yesterday. What annoyed me the most is that Facebook don’t know my real name, they made me change my name and I had no chance to prove my real name. I could have put in any name, even a fake name, but I couldn’t keep my full name because I had no chance to prove it was mine.

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