Will Facebook Match My Socks Too?

I’m sure there are plenty of people that are still too upset about Facebook format changes from three years ago, to be particularly upset about yesterday’s changes. It’s fascinating to read or hear the backlash each time Facebook changes their layout. When we have beautiful fall weather, we need something to complain about, so I guess it gets to be Facebook. I suspect if there was an Amazon review of Facebook it would be “3 Stars, nice product but changes too often and won’t stop my mom from replying to my posts.”

Generally speaking, Facebook is one of the few companies releasing new features that work, rather than features that don’t work to replace features that never did work from the previous version. There are a few interesting things that have changed with this release and just like everyone else in America with access to a blog, I feel the need to tell you about it at this very moment.

The first thing is their promotion of lists in importance and helping us to formulate them. This is reasonable since I would probably never get around to categorizing my 500+ friends. To be honest, I have fewer socks than that and if it wasn’t for my wife, I’d probably never categorize them in pairs either. Facebook relied on the basic methods of blood (family), time (my Hiram College list) and space (people that are near Saint Paul). None of which are actually that useful to me and I suspect it’s the same for others. I don’t think we structure our social media generated virtual world in the same way we structure our interactions in the real world. Interestingly, my wife was added to a Family Group of a friend whom we’ve hung out with once since her wedding a few years ago. The only buggy thing I can speculate about the algorithms is that her first name starts with a J and last name starts with an I, so Facebook assumed she’s related to me, and that makes her related to my wife? Although the other JI and I aren’t friends at the time of this writing (request sent, I swear).

I’d rather Facebook did content based suggestions to help me organize my social life.

My Facebook Content Lists would be:

1. Posts Only Baby Photos
2. Copies and Pastes Religious/Political Talking Points
3. Serial Farmville Updater
4. Passive Aggressive Vague Post Writers
5. I Won’t Ever Read Your Blog Again
6. People Who Treat Their Relationship Status like a Light Switch

So yeah, there’s that.

The only other things I’d like to comment on are the idea of Top News Stories being related to how long it’s been since your last login is a great idea. Although, for me it’s still littered with people from Twitter and their cross-posted content—that’s a function of them being more prolific and engaged “sharers” than most of my physical world friends. Finally, the only thing I really despise about the new layout is the real time ticker in the upper right hand of the layout. I’ve yet to find something interesting in there AND it’s locked to the screen giving it the feel of a really creepy clown picture with overly painted eyes following me around the room. I just don’t like it and hopefully will get so used to it that I actually won’t notice it anymore.

Like any organization marketing to consumers or businesses, Facebook should connect with its users, and find out what they like, need, and suggest before making serious changes to their product. Just because they think it’s good, doesn’t mean their customers do.

Now if you’ll excuse me, I need to go worry about much more important things than Facebook’s new layout.

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