Sunday, March 25, 2012

For better or worse: Facebook Timeline is here!

Facebook Timeline is here for everybody this week (March 30) …. and for some it will be overwhelming.

As previously noted, this next evolution of Facebook, was not welcomed by all Facebookers, but was going to happen regardless because of the advertising opportunities it presents Facebook. The layout gives FB several prime advertising spots. Look for ads to start showing up soon (if you haven’t seen them already).

There are some things (some good and some otherwise) that Timeline changes about Facebook:

Apps gone wild: Facebook now has more than 3,000 apps that can be added to individual timelines. While this should make Facebook more fun there may be a downside (see the next point). In any case to learn more you can also visit the official Facebook Timeline Apps page.

Apps and privacy: As CNN Money reported on March 23 in Facebook strips 'privacy' from new 'data use' policy explainer a Facebook data policy document intended to make the site's methods more transparent is instead kicking up a fresh firestorm. It clarifies that Facebook's current terms allow apps to tap into all of the information that the app's users have access to.

  "This is a significant acknowledgement that Facebook is focused on data collection, data storage and data sales, because that's where they make their money," says Sarah Downey, a privacy analyst at security software company Abine. "They're more accurately describing what they do." Some 32,000 Facebook members in Germany issued the same one-sentence protest which roughly translated as: "I reject the changes."

Business pages: Timeline for business pages brings a lot of new functionality for business, but also takes away some features that were being abused. For a great summary of these see Adeo Group’s Facebook Timeline Checklist for Your Business Pages. In a nutshell Timeline should give business owners more flexibility and options for customizable content.

Too busy running a business? Business owners may think they don’t have the time to pay attention to Facebook’s evolution, but Forbes recently posted a great report by Mari Smith called Facebook 101 for Busy Business Owners that cuts through a lot of the confusion. This piece will quickly help business owners understand why investing a little time in a Facebook could pay dividends.

If you have just a litle extra time you should read 15 Must Know Tips to Rock Your New Facebook Timeline Business Page by Pam Moore. This is an excellant wrap up on the key things you need to know re Facebook business pages.

And one final warning: Don’t fall for the "Remove Facebook’s Timeline" scam that is now widely circulating. The scams range from getting you to click through to a scam survey to hacking your Facebook profile (so the hackers can spam all your friends). There is no going back to the old Facebook no matter how badly you want to. Read more at: Can you remove Facebook's Timeline feature?

Whether you've adjusted to the new Timeline or are still struggling to make sense of it, some previous posts might help:

Timeline basics: This looks at what the change means and how to clean up your past history on Facebook.

Privacy settings and friends: This examines whether you need to reconsider your definition of a "friend" and helps you re-examine your privacy settings.

Using Friend Lists: This looks at how to manage Friend Lists in two different ways.

Final preparations: A checklist to get ready for Timeline and how to set up regular reminders to check your Facebook privacy settings.

So, what do you think ? Is Timeline a good thing or not-so-much?


  1. I am not looking forward to these changes. I find it confusing when I go to a friend's page that's already in Timeline. Thanks for your tips.

  2. You are not alone in the "not-a-fan" department! Thanks for the props.

  3. timeline sucks big time

  4. remember the charges that a bank tried to impose on it's customers? People left that bank and went to another and sure enough, the bank took those charges away.
    Why can't we do othis with facebook. I'm 67 yrs old and truthfully, i have facebook so that I can enjoyt he games i play. all this is too much for me so i will be cancelling it.

  5. Thanks for the feedback and as to quitting Facebook: It would take a massive revolt and millions of people quitting Facebook before the company decided to undo Timeline.

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