An Internet rumor claiming that users will soon have to pay for Facebook prompted the company to issue a denial and promise the service always be free.
The rumor has made the rounds via numerous members’ status updates:
“IT IS OFFICIAL IT WAS EVEN ON THE NEWS. FACEBOOK WILL START CHARGING DUE TO THE NEW PROFILE CHANGES. IF YOU COPY THIS ON YOUR WALL YOUR ICON WILL TURN BLUE AND FACEBOOK WILL BE FREE FOR YOU. PLEASE PASS THIS MESSAGE ON IF NOT YOUR ACCOUNT WILL BE DELETED IF YOU DO NOT PAY”
Facebook gave us a statement and posted this on their own Facebook page last night: “A rumor on the internet caught our attention. We have no plans to charge for Facebook. It’s free and always will be.”
The website has recently come under harsh criticism for changes to the service’s newsfeed–the first of many changes coming to Facebook.
It’s not the first time such misinformation has spread. In July when Facebook announced it was partnering with the video chat service Skype, a similar rumor made the rounds.
Facebook may not need the money — Reuters reported earlier this month that the company’s profits for the first half of 2011 had doubled into the billion-dollar range. The privately-held social networking company makes money from advertisements on the site and is valued at over $80 billion.