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There has being a few questions regarding Facebook users have been reporting that the term “ref=tn_tinyman” has been suffixed at the end of their Facebook profile URLs.
As far as we can tell thus far, the first instances of this happening were around 3-4 days from the time of writing, but most popularly occurring within the last 12 hours from the time of writing. The phenomena is stirring up much controversy in the Facebook community.
This is what we know –
The tn_tinyman URL extension does not appear on most Facebook accounts. For those unfamilliar with Internet scripting, the ?ref=tn_tinyman actually means a variable called ref is being passed into the current webpage – most likely your profile page – with the valuetn_tinyman – (look at the URL of this page and you will see something similar – the variable idis being passed to this page – view.php – with the variable 1428 – in this case to make sure you see the correct article. Changing the number brings up a different article)
This means the phenomena is almost certainly something to do with Facebooks inner workings – the social networking giant has been making major changes recently, including the soon-to-be-introduced timeline feature – so this is likely merely a temporary glitch – a symptom of the inner workings of Facebook. Changing the tn_tinyman variable to anything you want makes no difference to the way your profile page is displayed.
There have been NO verifiable reports that this phenomena is malicious in any way. It does not mean a Facebook account has been “hacked” and there is no evidence to suggest this has anything to do with the rumoured attacks by members of Anonymous.
The only people who can accurately tell us what the variable actually does is Facebook themselves, and thus far there is no word, nor is there guaranteed to ever be one. Of course we will keep you updated.