Facebook updates like mad with more to come

Ronny Kerr · September 22, 2011 · Short URL: https://vator.tv/n/1f55

Leading up to its one-day developers conference in San Francisco, the social network transforms

Everybody is freaking out.

We’re used to Facebook changing things on us out of nowhere without our express approval, but this is just getting out of hand. I mean, look at all these site changes rolled out in just the last two weeks:

  • Friend Lists: Straight from the book of Google+, you can now categorize your friends into groups, like “Close Friends” or “Acquaintances.”
  • Subscriptions: Straight from the book of Google+ and Twitter, you can now follow anyone’s public updates, whether or not the two of you are friends.
  • News Feed: Besides the aesthetic changes, Facebook now customizes what appears in the News Feed based on how frequently you check the site. Users who come back often will see the most recent updates, whereas users who only come once or twice a week will only see the most important updates.
  • News Ticker: No matter how you get your News Feed, you’ll see a News Ticker on the right side of your browser, pulling in the most recent Facebook stories--like comments or photo uploads--in realtime. (This feature is probably what Xzibit’s talking about in the meme pic below.)

Already, users on the site have reacted like the predictable Facebook users they are. Shocked, appalled, annoyed and desperate to find any way out. There were even instructions floating around suggesting that users change their language to anything but English (U.S.) to get rid of the changes.  

And f8 hasn’t even happened yet. Has Mark Zuckerberg ever heard of a little thing called “Facebook fatigue,” or does he just simply not believe in it?

Either way, everyone is expecting a ton of new features and tools to launch at the San Francisco developers conference that could have as large effect on the social network as did last f8.

Here are a couple rumors of what’s to come:

Newest to pop up this week is a report that Facebook is amping up to launch four new buttons, mirroring the launch of the Like button at last year’s f8 conference. The new buttons, reportedly, are “Read,” “Watched,” “Listened” and “Want,” with the last of the four slated for a later launch date. How developers, third-party sites and consumers would take to so many new social plugins all at once is a little questionable.

The biggest speculation of all still circulating around is whether or not Facebook will finally be launching its long-rumored but never-implemented music service. But no one seems to have any idea what it could look like. We do know one thing, though: it’s exciting to see both Spotify CEO Daniel Ek and Turntable.fm co-founder and CEO Billy Chasen on the list of panelists.

For now, however, a rumor is just a rumor.

And, all the while, I can’t help but think about... poor Google+. How many people cared that they opened fully to the public this week? Oh well.

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