Petition demands Facebook fixes 'plague village' error

St Peter's Church, Wolfhampcote
St Peter's Church, Wolfhampcote

A photographer has set up a petition to Facebook to demand the site fixes a geo-tagging error which is saying posts across Warwickshire are coming from an abandoned ‘plague’ village.

Christine Burke, a self-employed dog portrait photographer who owns Christine Lynne Burke Photography, set up the petition after the tagging error began to impact on her ability to do business.

She said her Facebook adverts stopped working and clients were struggling to find her – believing she lived near the remote abandoned village.

She said: “Facebook wants everyone to live there - I don’t want to live in a plague village.”

After stating the problem is getting more widespread, she said: “The plague village appears to be spreading.”

Facebook users across Warwickshire have been left perplexed after their posts are being tagged as coming from ‘Wolfhamcote’ – understood to be Wolfhampcote, a long-forgotten village near Rugby which was rumoured to have been abandoned after a plague outbreak.

Although some historians believe the village was abandoned for economic reasons.

Mrs Burke said Facebook has been helpful in rectifying the tagging error on her business page, although that was only after she persisted in contacting the website.

She said: “My advice to other business owners would be to keep bashing away at Facebook and they will eventually speak to you.”

Many social media sites and apps allow users to indicate where they are when they make a post – called geotagging.

The tags allow people to show where they are, and for others to see posts made in the same area by others.

However, if Facebook’s system does not recognise the location correctly, or has been programmed incorrectly, it can produce the wrong tag.

At the time of printing, the petition has gathered 108 signatures.

Mrs Burke aims to gather 1,000 signatures before delivering the petition to Facebook’s UK headquarters in London.

The petition can be viewed or signed at goo.gl/DMr2Q3