The New Facebook Profile Timeline Page- First Impressions

(note: normally, I blog about social media and digital marketing stuff either Wednesday or Thursday and either Saturday or Sunday but this was too juicy to wait, so byebye Friday night! Hope you enjoy it!)


So, I decided that it’s inevitable anyway and used the developer app workaround to enable the new Facebook profile page layout/scheme on my profile early. There’s a definite nod to tablets in the new layout (the ads are also parked at the ¬†lower right now so you can’t scroll past ’em):



I played with it for an hour or so and here’s my initial impressions:

It does one thing really, really well, and it’s sort of what Facebook has always done well- it appeals to the User’s vanity. With the new timeline view and yearly summaries of activity, the User has the ability to retcon their existence ALL THE WAY BACK TO THEIR BIRTH if they feel like it, essentially letting them write whatever story about themselves they want to tell- right up until they got onto the Facebook tether; that is. It’s personal scrapbooking taken public and writ large; and you can leave out anything you don’t want anyone to see; and if you don’t want to fill in anything in the past, that’s all right, Facebook’s got it from here.

The layout itself is a little…I dunno. The banner picture and the pictures you add to timeline events such as having a kid or getting married aren’t cropped, but you drag them around in a preview window and have to guess if they’re centered and the focal point is what shows (same goes for the bigass banner image at the top). I hope you’ve got hi-res pictures of yourself graduating, having kids, and getting a new job too because if you want to add photos to your timeline events there appear to be quite a few categories that you can’t NOT feature in the timeline- meaning the picture you upload will be the width of the browser window; and some pictures that look nice at a lower size:

look pretty bad when blown up in the timeline:


*Shrug* I guess this is their way of encouraging us to buy better cameras or something? What I found ironic is that while I was looking for pictures to add to life events (couldn’t find anything fitting for a colectomy) I had Google Plus open in another tab for easy access to all my photos. Also, it’s not the end of the world everyone is making it out to be, the default interface is still the trusty ol’ News Feed (albeit with the new weirdness); so unless you spend a lot of time re-reading your own posts it won’t make a ton of difference, outside of making things a lot more interesting for e-stalkers. Personally, I think it’s kind of cool and it could easily be a huge time sink- but it’s also sort of creepy to look back at the timeline yearly summary and see your year, logged digitally, in a neat little package, without thinking about who else is seeing that same information in the form of marketing data.

I guess my biggest question is how come I still don’t see the freakin’ Ticker?

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