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Facebook cuts off Social Roulette, app with 1-in-6 chance of killing your Facebook account

Updated: May 14, 2013 02:34 PM EDT
Image courtesy of Digital Trends Image courtesy of Digital Trends


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It's possible that the day may come when you want to delete your Facebook account. It's difficult to imagine, and it will probably be hard to pull the trigger – which is where Social Roulette briefly came in. True to its name, the app is a game of roulette in which you're gambling your digital life. After giving the app permissions, you then take a one-in-six chance of letting it delete your Facebook account. 

You'll lose everything, and we mean everything, including your Facebook posts, friends, photos, and profile information. On the upside, there's five-in-six chance of not having your profile deleted. If that's the case, you'll be graced with a Facebook post that says "I just played Social Roulette and survived."

People might exhaustively talk about deleting their Facebook accounts, but in many instances nothing of their incessant talking may actually come of it. And to be clear, Social Roulette deletes your profile, meaning it erases all the content – it doesn't actually deactivate your account. But the impetus of an empty Facebook might be enough to get you to do the rest yourself.

"Everyone thinks about deleting their account at some point, it's a completely normal reaction to the overwhelming nature of digital culture. Is it time to consider a new development in your life? Are you looking for the opportunity to start fresh?" the Social Roulette page explains. The app was developed by Jonas Lund, Jonas Jongelan, and NYU professor Kyle McDonald as a social experiment to see if users would take the risk of losing all their data – at least, that was the idea. Facebook caught wind of the project and – shockingly – weren't thrilled with the idea of an app that aimed to get people off of its platform.

In fact, Social Roulette was shut down a mere four hours after launching. McDonald explained to TechCrunch that Facebook revoked the app's API access rather promptly; the social network cited a vague violation of its policies to justify cutting off Social Roulette. The app created a "negative user experience" and complimented the fact that that Social Roulette's logo blatantly ripped off Facebook's iconic logo, which is a no-no.

But the team behind Social Roulette isn't giving up. They're creating on a workaround that'll adhere to Facebook's standards, so they say, and may launch a workable update as early as this week.

This article was originally posted on Digital Trends

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