After my last post, I had a few conversations with friends about a categorized or sortable Facebook feed. The point of my post was as much about how Facebook could have better managed the transition from profiles to feeds as it was about categorizing updates, but the latter was, for whatever reason, what I ended up debating.
What I heard from multiple people was, basically, “I don’t use Facebook that way.” As far as I can tell, my friends mostly use Facebook to post pictures, view pictures, and write on walls.
Perhaps this is the wrong conclusion to draw, but I think this is just more evidence that Facebook is continuing to miss out on an opportunity. The people I spoke to aren’t thinking about Facebook as a tool for discovering new music, books, interests, etc. because Facebook hasn’t made it easy for them to do so.
If my friends are any indication (and perhaps they’re not?), Facebook users view the platform as a place to see what their friends are up to, and to stay in touch. They don’t see it as an unprecedented social graph with massive potential to inform and recommend various aspects of their lives.
But that’s what it is.
Perhaps the introduction of a music social network by Apple will spur innovation at Facebook. After all, is a sortable/categorized news feed really all that much to ask? Maybe I’m nuts, but I think people would learn to appreciate it quickly.
UPDATE: Apparently, Facebook is testing a feature to “subscribe” to certain friends, to be sure you don’t miss any of their updates. I have nothing to say about this now, and it’s not directly related to what I’m talking about, but I’ll count it as news feed innovation.