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Good day to all!

I've been trying to use Empathy for Facebook chat for quite some time now but whenever I try to enable it, I get the "Applications can no longer access your Facebook online account blah, blah, blah..." and so I tried going to Online Accounts and then grant access. But whenever I click the button to grant access, it reverts back to "off" after maybe three seconds. What's happening and how can I solve this?

P.S. I already tried using Pidgin but I still get the same error. Sometimes I get the "authorization failed" error as well.

Also, I can log into my FB account using my web browser.

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  • Can you still log into your Facebook account with a web browser? If you're already logged in there, log out and back in to check. – David Foerster Dec 29 '15 at 13:56
  • Hi! Thanks for your response! Yes, I already tried that but I still get the error. :-( – Blessy Chio Dec 29 '15 at 19:06
  • Ok, but can you log into Facebook from the web browser? – David Foerster Dec 29 '15 at 19:10
  • Yes, I still can. D: – Blessy Chio Dec 29 '15 at 19:13
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    Great! So we have that ruled out. Please edit your question, so future readers can see this fact more easily. – David Foerster Dec 29 '15 at 19:28
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A note upfront: It appears that Empathy doesn't support Facebook's messaging service, but Pidgin, a similar multi-messaging client based on the same library libpurple, does with a plug-in as described below.

The purple-facebook plugin is a replacement for the builtin Facebook XMPP plugin. Facebook is in the process of shutting down their XMPP service, which will inevitably break existing support.

(Source)

The following instructions are written for Pidgin and while they should work for the same for Empathy in theory (since they're both based on libpurple), people report that Empathy doesn't accept this plug-in for some reason.

To install purple-facebook in Ubuntu, Linux Mint and derivatives, you can use its official repository. To add the repository and install the plugin, use the following commands:

sudo add-apt-repository "deb http://download.opensuse.org/repositories/home:/jgeboski/xUbuntu_$(lsb_release -rs)/ /"
wget -O- 'https://jgeboski.github.io/obs.key' | sudo apt-key add -
sudo apt-get update
sudo apt-get install purple-facebook

If you don’t want to add the PPA, you can download the DEB from HERE (but you won’t receive any updates unless you add the repository). Or, grab the source and build it yourself. […]

Once installed, add a new account in Pidgin (Accounts > Manage Accounts > Add) and in the Protocol dropdown, select “Facebook” (important: NOT “Facebook (XMPP)”):

Pidgin Facebook I should also mention that in the username field, you can enter either your emil, your Facebook username or phone number associated with your Facebook account.

(Source with some modifications)


As of October 18, 2015, jgeboski's GSoC work was merged into the mainline Pidgin project. It will appear in the next major release of Pidgin.

This means, future libpurple versions in Ubuntu (and probably earlier in the Pidgin PPA) will include purple-facebook and supersede the above procedure.

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  • Hey! This solved it! Didn't work with Empathy though. But it worked for Pidgin! – Blessy Chio Dec 30 '15 at 5:26
  • Still doesn't work with Empathy or GOA but yeah, with Pidgin it's okay. – cprn Jan 16 '16 at 14:15
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If I remember correctly - Facebook changed their API, which effectively prevented several packages from accessing your account and utilizing the API options - such as chat.

You can find more information with a simple Google search, for example: http://www.omgubuntu.co.uk/2015/04/facebook-chat-api-empathy-pidgin-stop-working

Last I heard, Pidgin and Empathy teams are working on a solution, I wish them the best of luck too.

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  • Ohhh. I saw this article before but dismissed it since it was published way back April but apparently it's still the issue. :[ Can you suggest an alternative then? I don't really go on the website to browse or anything. I mainly use FB for chatting with friends, therefore, I really liked Pidgin/Empathy which allowed me to chat with them without going to the website itself. :[ Thanks a lot for taking the time to answer my question! :] – Blessy Chio Dec 29 '15 at 19:09
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  1. I follow the steps for installing The purple-facebook plugin for Pidgin.
  2. I install Pidgin.
  3. Created facebook account in Pidgin.
  4. In Empathy, import the facebook account from Pidgin. 5- Removed Pidgin software after facebook account imported.

And its working

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