Tuesday, September 27, 2011

Facebook changes -- Understand and appreciate

Light ball

There seems to be a lot of changes to Facebook recently, especially after the emergence of Google+. Some of the changes seemed pretty minor, and some quite dramatic. Many people are unhappy about the changes as some are afraid about their privacy settings getting changed again. These concerns seem valid as Facebook has indeed not managed some of the changes well, however, the recent changes which many people complained about does not seem as bad as it appears to be -- but you need to know why it benefits you.

Firstly, there may seem to be an overflow of information but if you look at the scrolling sidebar which looks like a twitter feed or advertisement, it is actually a list of "not so important feed" Facebook calls "Ticker". All “lightweight” information is going to the Ticker, so you don't have to see your friends liking a post or getting killed in Mafia wars on the main Facebook feeds.

Besides that, the layout of how Facebook displays photos is also changed. The photos will be displayed with a big photo and 2 smaller ones on the side when you upload an album, so your friends can view the photos better on the mobile phone.

You’re going to get a Timeline (an opt in feature) — a scrapbook of your life. In a complete overhaul of its ever-evolving profile page, Facebook is introducing Timeline. This is a stream of information about you — the photos you’ve posted, all your status updates, the apps you’ve used, even the places you’ve visited on a world map — that scrolls all the way back to your birth.

Facebook Gestures is launched and you don’t have to just Like something — now you can [verb] any [noun]. So now Facebook’s partners and developers can turn any verb into a button. Also note that Facebook apps need only ask permission once to share stories on your behalf, but it will not spam your friend's news feeds as it will appear in the ticker only.

You can watch TV and movies, listen to music, and read news with your friends — all within Facebook. Facebook has partnered many other side and after F8, there are a lot more things you can do without ever having to leave Facebook.

When you understand some of these changes are actually improvements to help you, perhaps its time to embrace the change and learn to appreciate it more.

-- Robin Low

For more information on Ticker, Timeline and Gestures, here are some relevant links.

Facebook Changes Again: Everything You Need To Know
What Should Facebook Page Admistrators Do After F8?
Facebook Timeline Redefines User Profiles

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