440 Castro logoFacebook’s asks creators of public pages for businesses to mark if the page is somehow alcohol related. Since I was making a page for a local bar, selecting the “alcohol related” choice in a drop-down menu seemed the fair thing to do.

That confession, I’ve discovered, blocks the page from being accessed by the masses.

When I am not signed on to Facebook and try to go to the 440 Castro page, I get a screen asking me to log on to Facebook first.

On the other hand, when I go to a church’s Facebook page, say the one for the First Unitarian Universalist Society of San Francisco, the page comes up just fine.

Apparently, there’s an alcohol taboo that will keep my client’s Facebook page from being crawled by Google or by being seen by any Internet dinosaur who doesn’t have a Facebook account.


Restricting the general public from viewing a page that is for a legit business that serves alcohol seems pointless. I’ve gotten information about a lot more offensive products emailed to me directly. More importantly, your average net surfer has developed a pretty good internal filter by the time they’ve reached 13. Besides, they can go to the 440’s website (or many, many bars’ websites) directly.

I’ll report this Facebook oddity to my client to see what, if anything, they want to do about their social media page.

In the meantime, we can all sleep easier knowing that little Johnny can learn online how to build a bomb but he cannot learn where he’ll be able to drink when he’s 21.