Wednesday, October 26, 2011

Friend Me, Like Me, and Subscribe to Me

Facebook has rolled out yet another update, and this time it is directly taking on Twitter in an even more obvious and confrontational way. You can now "follow" on Facebook.

One of the best things about Twitter was that you could "follow" people without having to "friend" them. It was a simple yet fantastic feature that Facebook couldn't offer. In order to "follow" someones status updates, likes, and shares on Facebook you had let them follow yours. And typically, this wasn't an equally interesting two-way street. Typically, one person is a better "Facebooker" than the other. And typically, one person ends up regretting the "friendship."

But now, you can "subscribe" to people on Facebook.

With Facebook subscriptions you can quickly and easily follow someone's Facebook updates with the click of a button. There's no accepting, no de-friending, and no two-way connections. It even allows celebrities to open up their personal Facebook profiles to the public.

But Facebook didn't stop there, they also quite quickly and reactively stomped out the one flame Google+ had to offer -- circles. Google+'s circles allowed you to create lists of people to share specific content with, thereby sparing your other connections from being "spammed" with content they didn't care about. With the new Facebook subscriptions and revamped lists feature, you can now not only post to your "friends," you can also post to public, family, close friends, or any self-defined list of people you'd like.

Facebook's latest update has changed everything, and firmly protected itself against its competitors. It was a brilliant move to secure its foothold as the present and future king of the social networks. It has improved every person's experience on Facebook -- from power user to stalking Grandma. Because now, you can not only friend me and like me, you can now also subscribe to me.

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