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Who Stole My Facebook URL?
By: Jeff Louis
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All a-twitter, I went to grab my new Facebook URL. When you sign up, Facebook provides you with options, such as Jeff1Louis, Jeff.Louis, or JeffLouis1, in case someone already had the URL. Well, no one would have mine...I was going to be fancy and use an ID that I had been using for years.

Excitedly, I began to type: w...w...w...dot...f...a...c...and, Enter!

Facebook returned a "ABC1234 is Not Available" message. I couldn't believe it.

I punched it in again.

"ABC1234 is Not Available." Facebook (FB) was now killing me.

Maybe, I thought, FB had restricted it for some reason? Certainly, no one would have the same URL...it was so random. Plus, I'd been using it for years so I was a surprised when it came up as taken. I went to the search bar, typed in "my" URL and it had been hijacked.

Staring back at me, the picture of some kid, arms loosely draped around another boy the same age. Brothers, or best friends? They were in grade school, and lived in the Northeastern United States. Bitterly, I went over my options:

Friend the kid and convince him to give me the URL
Pay for the URL
Contact his parents. Surely they'd understand...
Contact the school
Email or contact his teacher
Then, like Ghandi, I was enlightened: My best friend lived in the same town! Certainly, Kyle was messing with me. He knew that I would go after the URL...and who was I kidding this kid was obviously fake! After closer inspection, the pictures looked like Royalty-free images...even his friends on the "set to private" page looked like they belonged in photo frames. Ohhh, Kyle was good, and I almost called him. But I didn't. I vowed revenge.

So, I reported him to Facebook. False profile. Stolen intellectual property.

Returning home after some forced family fun, I checked the URL again to make sure it was still taken. It was. But the page had changed...there were different friends. Man, that Kyle was good! I hit "Refresh" and 8 more friends popped up. Different from before. Up in the corner, the number 4 - 0 - 5 burned into my brain. Four hundred and five friends. Kyle would never go to those lengths...

My heart began to pound, my hands sweaty and cold, stark realization pouring over me like a shroud. I had just reported a minor to a large company for theft and intellectual rights' infringement. A boy.

Investigating further, I checked the school. It really existed. Kid's last name?...Yep. The family even lived close to the school. The friends were real as well. In retrospect, I should have checked these things out prior to reporting "Kyle."

For a couple days now, I've been waiting for an unknown number to ring my phone. Facebook, the police, or some other authority. I sit here, a fugitive, pondering life without Facebook...



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About the Author

Jeff Louis: Media Planner, Brand Project Manager, blogger, and aspiring writer. Please leave a comment or get in touch with Jeff on Twitter. As always, thank you for reading!

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