Facebook announced yet more changes to their social networking platform today at their annual f8 Developer’s Conference. Buzz was high about the changes, which were anticipated “to change the world of social media.” Then again, that’s not so difficult for Facebook, which is the only social media/social networking platform many people use.
The changes will be big, but in a nutshell:
Timeline – Mark Zuckerberg used phrases like, “All your stories, all your apps. A new way to express who you are.” and, “capturing the stories of our lives.” Sounds more like a Hallmark commercial than a Facebook keynote, right? And indeed it is.
Timeline allows you to capture all of your pictures, stories, maps, videos, and other digital footprints in a literal timeline. You can enter old information and media if you like, turning your Facebook profile into your life story. It looks gorgeous, even on mobile platforms. For parents, it will be fun to look back on how your family has grown over time.
Yay: Great looking interface and plenty of control over the individual privacy settings on each piece of information. Will certainly appeal to younger Millennials who seem to love sharing every detail of their lives.
Boo: It’s not really a “Boo,” but… do we all really want to tell the “stories of our lives” on Facebook?
Apps – The idea is to provide people with more ways to share what they like, what they’re doing, and maybe even how they’re doing it. Everything you do, say, listen to, and view on Facebook will be captured in the now infamous “ticker” on the side of the screen.
In order to meet their mission of making “the world more open and connected,” Facebook has partnered with some of the most noteworthy and respected media and news companies on the web. Think Spotify, Eventbrite, Ticketmaster, Yahoo!, Netflix, Mashable, Foodify, Hulu, and Foodspotting.
But don’t imagine that you’ll just be hitting the “Like” button more. Nope. Facebook is adding… verbs. According to Zuckerberg, “You don’t have to ‘like’ a book, you can just ‘read’ a book. You don’t have to ‘like’ a movie, you can just ‘watch’ a movie.”
Yay: Cool apps and the flexibility of verbs.
Boo: That ticker. It’s distracting to have it scrolling all the time, and it shares just a bit too much information. While most of the information was readily available if anyone wanted to find it, no one wanted to find it. Now, you can expect your every move to be captured on the ticker.
Parents take note: While Facebook has added more fine controls for privacy, you can expect that your kids will largely ignore them. Unfortunately, the new Timeline is just begging to be filled with all the things you hope they won’t share.