Wednesday, March 25, 2009

Facebook tweaks new design

Mark Zuckerberg, the founder, CEO, and president of Facebook, once again struck Facebook users with a drastic do-over of the homepage.

This time Facebook was modeled very similarly to Twitter.  Facebook focused on an updated 'feed' that would keep users informed of the latest happenings going on in their friends lives.  The feed would focus on random, current status updates and wall-to-wall conversations between friends.  Before, the user had more control over the content on his homepage.

Overwhelmingly, Facebook users opposed the new design.  Facebook groups, fan pages, and petitions were created to protest the new design.

In one Facebook application, it gave users the opportunity to vote and comment on the new layout.  The current result (as of March 24) has 80,031 supporting the new layout and 1,230,078 opposing it.

In response to some of the major complaints, Facebook made some minor changes to accomodate users who want to personalize the homepage.   In the past, Facebook has ignored the reponse from users.  When Facebook began changing the overall layout in September, they were met with enormous opposition.  Some groups that protested the change received more than a million members, but Facebook ignored those complaints.

Facebook is now allowing users to filter some of what is on the feed page and to take some control over the content that appears.  While most critics appreciate the change, one writer said that the only way progress can come is for companies to ignore their customer's wants.  The writer made an interesting point by quoting Robert Scobel, a self-professed 'technical evangelist, "if you asked a group of Porsche owners what they wanted they'd tell you things like "smoother ride, more trunk space, more leg room, etc." He'd then say well, they just designed a Volvo."

I hate the changes Facebook has undergoing, starting with the change in September.  I believe the changes have not been progressive and instead are regressive.  However, I think that Michael Arrington (the writer who supports Facebook's changes) does have an interesting point.  What do all of you think?


  1. I am not a facebook member. But why does anything like this surprise me? It doesn't because people are wanting change all the time. Some of it is bad change but if it pleases the facebook nation, then go for it. Next thing you know, myspace will want to do it as well just so they can keep up with facebook. I hope that facebook doesnt change their design. Thoughtful post. Keep up the great work.

  2. I just became a facebook member about a month ago, so I really don't know what the old version looked like. It looks fine to me. I met a new friend the other day and he said he wanted the old facebook back. I guess they wanted to do something different, but they have some members who are not happy with the change. Remember, we live in a world of change get use to it.

  3. I think that Facebook is becoming just plain creepy. I hate all the changes that they're making. Granted, we can personalize our pages, and customize settings, I really would rather just seem someone's status update instead of their status update, and some random comment they left on another person's Facebook wall.

    I disabled my wall comments specifically for that reason. I only use the chat feature, limited applications, and the messaging feature on the page that isn't a wall post.

    Facebook seems to be taking a turn for the worst, and I fully support the old one.

  4. Facebook is really bugging me. It used to be so hard to like get an account, needing a college email. Then it rapidly went downhill, turning into the new MySpace. Yeah, I use Facebook, but the applications, the layout, the notifications-they are really starting to annoy me. It used to be a controlled environment, but its turning into another easy way for people to attack others online and I'd rather not use it knowing it keeps spiraling downward.