I’m terrified, awestruck, and excited by the changes Facebook has brought about over the past couple of weeks. A beta version of the Open Graph has been released. Tons of amazing partners like Rdio and Netflix are now deeply integrated with the social networking giant. Profile pages have completely transformed into a timeline that chronicles your life. An additional news ticker now follows you down the page. And subscriptions…?
No doubt, all of this sudden change can be very overwhelming for somebody who has no interest in keeping track. The concept of the Open Graph can be very confusing for the common Facebook user, and sort of morphs the previous notion of “sharing” content on the web. For one thing, users can now choose to further automate the sharing of mundane, everyday activities to their Facebook “Timelines” (things like running, watching a movie, and listening to music, etc).
For a guy who keeps track of social media closely, even I am starting to feel overwhelmed. I see the amazing business opportunities and motivations behind these changes, absolutely. But I’m not so sure that the average user will enjoy this long term. There has got to be a breaking point, right? A time when all of this sharing becomes sheer information overload, and our brains begin to tune things out (much like we do with advertisements). Not to mention all of the new privacy issues and concerns that arise from such a sudden change.
How do we feel about all this? Are you starting to feel overwhelmed by Facebook, and social media in general? Or, as a guy working in social media, am I just idiotic for raising this question in the first place? I’d love to hear some thoughts.