“For the first time ever in a single day we had 500 million people use Facebook” – Mark Zuckerberg
For those who focus on the debate between Facebook, Google Plus and Twitter are missing the true story. Today at Facebook’s f8 developer conference we were reminded about what the story really is…you and me. No, it’s not about features, capabilities, or the number of users. We were reminded about the power of something much more important, our experiences, relationships, the content we create and share and how each paint a picture of who we are as individuals.
Today Facebook introduced features for its users and developers alike that position Facebook not as a social network, but instead as a platform for storytelling and meaningful engagement. How is this different than the profile you’ve come to know over the years? The team at Facebook explains…
Back in the early days of Facebook, your profile was pretty basic – just your name, a photo, where you went to school…stuff you’d cover in the first five minutes you met someone. Over time, your profile evolved to better reflect how you actually communicate with your friends. The way your profile works today, 99% of the stories you share vanish. The only way to find the posts that matter is to click “Older Posts” at the bottom of the page. Again. And again. With timeline, now you have a home for all the great stories you’ve already shared. They don’t just vanish as you add new stuff.
Timeline is a new kind of profile, one that lets people tell their story in a visually-rich and artistic fashion. In addition to aesthetics, Timeline is essentially a social home page for all that moves you, from media to experiences to people. The biggest difference you’ll notice is presentation. Starting with the substantial image that you choose to depict your persona, the new format essentially turns your profile into a Flipboard-esque (magazine) pictorial rich with updates, content, and connections…all designed to tell your story, your way. Don’t be confused by the name however, Timeline is much more than that, it’s essentially a storyboard for your digital and real life as told by what you share and what others share with you.
“Timeline is the story of your life,” said Mark Zuckerberg “All your stories, all your apps, express who you are.”
And according to Chris Cox, Facebook’s VP of Product, “Facebook is a platform for human storytelling.”
The new Facebook changes make Google+ look good – you can’t see recent posts, only the “top posts” that Facebook’s algorithm picks, you can’t see other people’s photo albums any more and have to scroll through individually tagged photos in the news feed instead, and there’s no way to control photo size in the news feed either. And as usual, no consultation or forewarning about these changes, and no response to feedback. Facebook is becoming dated.
Below is a photo of 41 personal friends of mine who’ve already signed up for the new Facebook. I need to find time and ask them about how they are adapting to the changes in the new Facebook, their comments and more.