Facebook.fr Tempts Original’s Wrath

    October 3, 2007

Facebook recently won the rights to Face-book.com, even though the previous owner didn’t, to be honest, appear to be imitating the popular social networking site.  But since Facebook was troubled by Face-book.com, expect some real problems to erupt over Facebook.fr, which was claiming to be a beta version of Facebook Paris.

 Facebook.fr Tempts Original's Wrath
Facebook.fr Tempts Original’s Wrath

It wasn’t, of course.  At least, it wasn’t a Facebook Paris that was ever approved by Mark Zuckerberg.  Still, during my visit yesterday, the elements of a social network appeared to be present – there were tabs for “Ma Page,” “Membres,” “Forum,” “Groupes,” “Photos,” and “Vidéos,” among other categories.

(Most of the site was in French, as you probably noticed.  Interestingly enough, the Google-provided ads were in English.)

That seemed bad.  Also, in an article for TechCrunch, Ouriel Ohayon reported, “The provocation goes a bit further since the social network which seems active is hosted on Ning, a service that allows you to create your own social network and that can be considered a competitor to Facebook.”

A return trip to Facebook.fr today revealed an entirely fresh look, and, tellingly, the phrase “buy this domain” in all caps. 

Facebook’s press team has not yet responded to a request for comment (a full voicemail system would appear to indicate they’re quite busy), but, given how the Face-book.com experience ended, don’t be surprised if ownership of Facebook.fr domain changes hands in the near future.  The transfer may involve lawsuits, though, and not legal tender.