Facebook Graph API v2.0 Deprecation

Facebook has begun sending out notices to Facebook Application administrators that v2.0 of the Graph API will be deprecated on August 8, 2016. The message can be a bit cryptic on it's own. It's very difficult to know what it means when you're using an extension like JFBConnect for integration, since it's supposed to mask you from the inner workings of Facebook integration for Joomla.

What do I need to do?

JFBConnect is constantly evolving and implementing changes that Facebook and other social networks require with their APIs. The list below should help you determine when you'll need to upgrade JFBConnect to ensure compatibility with Facebook's API:

  • JFBConnect v6.4.2 - uses Graph API v2.4, which will be supported by Facebook through October 7th, 2017
  • JFBConnect v6.4.0 - uses Graph API v2.3, which will be supported by Facebook through July 8th, 2017
  • JFBConnect v6.1.2 - uses Graph API v2.1, which will be supported by Facebook through October 30th, 2016

If you're using any of those JFBConnect versions, or earlier, we recommend upgrading to the latest release by the dates above to ensure a smooth transition as Facebook's API removes support for older versions.

For the details on what the Graph API is and what is being deprecated, read on.

 

The Facebook Graph API

We've already written extensively about what the Facebook Graph API is back when v2 was announced in May 2014. In short, it's the interface that Facebook created for websites to allow users to authenticate, fetch profile information, post to Facebook Pages and Groups and all the other features that JFBConnect already supports. They are constantly releasing new versions of the API and, each time they do, the last version is given a 2 year window of functionality, after which time the older version will no longer be available.

There have been 6 API releases, starting with Graph API v2.0 on April 30th, 2014. When v2.1 was released on August 7th, 2014, that set the countdown for the removal of v2.0 for August 8th, 2016, which is what the notice Facebook sent out is letting you know about.

The most recent version, v2.6, became available on April 12th, 2016 and will be available through at least April 2018. Since no new version has been announced, the actual end-date for 2.6 hasn't been established yet.

Why did I receive the email from Facebook?

Facebook allows calls to their API to be made without specifying a version number. JFBConnect intentionally does not specify an API version with all calls because it allows our integration to use the oldest version of an API available to your application. As Facebook evolves, it generally has become more privacy-focused and has restricted some API calls to return less data.

By making some API calls using a newer version and others without a version, we ensure our users can get the best features available across each of Facebook's available APIs. The downside to this method is that, when an API is about to be deprecated, Facebook may send you a notice about the impending removal of a version of the API.

There are no updates required to JFBConnect to support this change (if you're using at least v6.1.2). We've been developing JFBConnect for more than 7 years and this isn't the first time we've dealt with a version deprecation. The unversioned calls made will simply use the Graph API v2.1 and should continue operating as they have before.

Stay in Ctrl

Facebook integration is difficult to do and even more difficult to always stay up to date with changes and new features. JFBConnect tries to make things as simple as possible and ease your fears when something like this happens. Are you unsure about some other piece of integration? Do you have questions about the Graph API in general? Sound off with whatever you need in our comments below.

 

Alex Andreae

Alex co-founded SourceCoast Web Development in 2008. Based in sunny Florida, SourceCoast develops extensions for integrating your Joomla powered website with popular social networks. He has spoken at more than a dozen Joomla User Groups and Joomla Days, including the Joomla World Conference in both 2012 and 2013. Topics have included social networking for Joomla, running a business around Joomla extensions, and Joomla development.


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