Yes yes, I’m one of the many people who pretended to be a Facebook developer just to see how this new timeline feature looks like. After reading about it on almost every single tech blog after the f8 conference, and seeing the video for it, I decided that testing out the new Facebook Timeline should be on my to-do list. Surprisingly, it was really easy to do!
If you haven’t tried it out yet, head on over to Mashable’s how-to blog post. It’s pretty straightforward and the process is not complicated at all.
Now that Facebook has their own ‘timeline’, I wonder how this will affect Twitter’s version of it?
See, the word ‘timeline’ used to be just for Twitter even though some people claim it’s a ‘Twitter thread’ (I don’t know why when it doesn’t look anything like a forum) while some call it ‘Twitter stream’ (which makes more sense). But still, most people who really use Twitter should know that it’s called a timeline.
Facebook on the other hand, takes ‘timeline’ to the next level mainly because theirs is the real thing. It’s literally a timeline. Your posts, photos and wall posts are organized by month, year and even from when you were born! With Twitter? It’s just a tweet stream that disappears eventually depending if you’ve been archiving them.
While it may look complicated during the first 2 seconds you see it, it’s really not. In fact, the design is clean and… I hate to say this, but it actually looks nice. Timeline makes more sense than how the old Facebook profile page looks like… IF you like looking back at your old posts or photos.
The design also encourages users to add old photos or even places you’ve been to. Check this out, you can even add your life events – with surgery and breaking a bone already added in there!
Some may want to make full use of this and have their ‘lifebook’ open for all their friends to see but I know a bunch who just want to put the past behind and forget that they even wore elephant jeans when they were in high school or that they actually dyed their hair blue in college. It’s a good memory bank but not everyone wants other people to see that!
My aunties, uncles and parents will probably like this because this gives them a chance to show the world that they actually used to be skinny or that at one point, they also used to have hair. (Now if only they can figure out how to use it.)
The Facebook timeline is cool but I don’t think I’ll be adding old pictures to complete my very own lifebook. I’m happy using Facebook to share links, some pictures and to talk to my friends and family. I don’t think I’m the real target demographic for this release.
You have to think, “Why are they suddenly asking me to add details of my entire life on Facebook?”
Is it because they just want you to tell your life story so you can express who you are to your friends? Or is it because they want you to live on Facebook so that they will have more chances of serving Facebook ads to you and make more money from it?
Remember, Facebook is expected to IPO late next year so these changes are intended not just to increase users’ time on Facebook but to add more ways to serve even more targeted ads.
If you’re interested in how this works, check out what they released just a month ago: Facebook Ad Targeting by Topic.