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4/12/2014
09:06 AM
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Facebook Changes: What To Expect

Facebook cracks down on spammy posts, tweaks privacy options, and revamps messaging. Here's what it means to you.

a friendly new face -- the privacy dinosaur. This "privacy checkup" message warns users when they're about to share a status update, photo, or link that will be visible to anyone. The popup displays a cartoon dinosaur using a laptop and asks you to verify with whom they want to share the post.

According to Facebook, it will update its audience selector menu in your status update box by adding details below each audience option. For example, Facebook will clarify Public with "Anyone on or off Facebook" and Friends with "Your friends on Facebook."

You may also notice a change in the status update box on your mobile device. In a test, Facebook will move the audience selector to the top of the update status box in a new "To:" field, similar to what you see when you compose an email.

Lastly, Facebook will let you change the privacy setting of your old cover photos, which are now automatically public. (Facebook already lets you change the privacy settings of your former profile photos.)

3. Facebook drops in-app messaging.

Facebook will soon require users to download two separate apps in order to chat with friends. The company confirmed that it plans to kill the messaging feature in its main iOS and Android apps and instead require users to download Messenger to chat with friends. Some Facebook users in Europe already received notifications alerting them to the change.

Users will have two weeks to download Messenger before the service in the main Facebook app disappears. Facebook will alert users several times before the feature disappears, though no date has been set.

Although the change will affect most mobile app Facebook users, Facebook won't require it for lower-end Android devices with memory limitations -- these users can still chat in-app, the company said. Facebook's iPad app is not affected either, though that will likely change.

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Kristin Burnham currently serves as InformationWeek.com's Senior Editor, covering social media, social business, IT leadership and IT careers. Prior to joining InformationWeek in July 2013, she served in a number of roles at CIO magazine and CIO.com, most recently as senior ... View Full Bio

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Brian.Dean
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Brian.Dean,
User Rank: Ninja
4/12/2014 | 10:59:07 AM
Newsfeeds and Ads
Freeing up the newsfeed is a good move for users, but more importantly, it should allow engagement for sponsored posts to become higher for advertisers, in turn this will deliver better ROI. With better ROI, more advertisers will want to use sponsored content, I just hope Facebook limits its ad space because already I feel that too many sponsored stories are in the newsfeed. It's a tricky area and the right balance needs to be found. 
danielcawrey
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danielcawrey,
User Rank: Ninja
4/12/2014 | 3:14:21 PM
Re: Newsfeeds and Ads
I certainly see too many posts on Facebook I deem irrelevant to me. Obviously Facebook was paying attention to this. Poor newfeed posts cause issues with user engagement and retention.

I think that the idea of the newsfeed was brillant in the first place - the problem has been that there's simply too much junk. Here's hoping this fixes that. 
Susan Fourtané
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Susan Fourtané,
User Rank: Ninja
4/14/2014 | 3:10:30 AM
Re: Newsfeeds and Ads
Daniel, 

"Poor newfeed posts cause issues with user engagement and retention."

Indeed! Filtering all those pictures that you see circulating several times a day in your newsfeed will help. 

-Susan
PaulS681
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PaulS681,
User Rank: Ninja
4/13/2014 | 10:37:58 AM
what about facebooks own spam?

What about Facebook's own spam? These are the posts that say because you like this page, here is another page you may like. I continually tell it to go away only to see it the next day again. That, I believe is Facebook's own spam. Are they going to get rid of that?

Ariella
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Ariella,
User Rank: Ninja
4/13/2014 | 10:23:19 PM
Re: what about facebooks own spam?
@PaulS681 I was thinking the same thing. Facebook itself is guilty of spamming members,  and likely it's not going to stop b/c one man's spam may be another one's converting click.
Susan Fourtané
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Susan Fourtané,
User Rank: Ninja
4/14/2014 | 2:56:15 AM
Re: what about facebooks own spam?
Ariella, 

More than Facebook's own spam what bothers me the most is all the nonesense non-stop pictures of cats and dogs populating Facebook plus those stupid posts from buzzfeed which annoy me to dead. And it's not that "you don't like animals," it's the amount of them and the comments what is annoying.

At least, FB's own spam shows you similar pages to the ones you like, which makes more sense to me. 

I am pretty happy that FB is going to limit the appearance of certain pitures and videos as well as the ones that everyone mindlessly share. 

-Susan 
Ariella
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Ariella,
User Rank: Ninja
4/14/2014 | 7:53:37 AM
Re: what about facebooks own spam?
@Susan right, a good percentage of internet activity, supposedly, goes to cat videos. 
Susan Fourtané
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Susan Fourtané,
User Rank: Ninja
4/15/2014 | 2:41:47 AM
Re: what about facebooks own spam?
Ariella, 

Maybe some pshychological study should be conducted to know the reason for this and to know who spend so much time watching cat videos and pictures. On the other hand, it would be a waste of time and resources to conduct such a pointless study. :D

-Susan
PaulS681
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PaulS681,
User Rank: Ninja
4/13/2014 | 10:44:11 AM
complexity

This is good that Facebook wants to make changes in regards to spam and privacy but how many people can decipher the privacy settings? There are so many that you could easily miss something and not even know that someone not on your friends list can see things. They do have a tool to let you see how people that aren't all your friends list see your page, and it works well. That being said I think it is a bit complex for some.

 

Kristin Burnham
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Kristin Burnham,
User Rank: Author
4/14/2014 | 8:22:09 AM
Re: complexity
Facebook's privacy settings are a challenge, and in my experience, has been the last straw for a handful of my friends who have left the social network. They're too worried about sharing something unintentionally, and it's not worth it to them to try to figure out the maze of settings.
Whoopty
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Whoopty,
User Rank: Ninja
4/14/2014 | 1:23:30 PM
Re: complexity
I hope the privacy changes don't end up defaulting all of the options - that's been a sneaky move Facebook pulled a while back. 

I use it mostly for work related stuff, but it's a hard sell at times. Especially when it was only a few years ago that Zuckerberg talked about the death of personal privacy like it was a good thing. 
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