Many people are outraged about Facebook’s new decision to roll out Timeline and cover photos, but if you look at the evolution of the internet as a whole – these are relatively conservative changes compared to the technology available.
Here are my tips for what you could be seeing and using on Facebook sooner than you think.
1. Group Photo Upload
I hate it when three or four of my friends upload photos to separate albums. Each album originating from their own Facebook page which I then have to navigate to, I also don’t want to have to create a group every time I want everyone’s photos to be in the same album.
So, why not add a ‘group upload’ facility in which you have the option to view all yours and your friends’ photos from one event in the same place. The author would be listed and people can be tagged.
Statistically, most people have a close-knit group of friends that they see regularly and are therefore most likely to have pictures with, and with Google+ exploiting this notion, I see it as a way forward.
You heard me right; Google+ is on to something.
2. Custom Design
This one is tricky – part of the reason for the success of Facebook is its structure, making sure no-one is alienated and making sure that all functions are open to all of its members. But I would like to see some more personalisation controls, much like a simplified version of Word Press.
Facebook has different core functions for many different people, however for a large proportion; these functions cross over with the ideologies of what is fundamentally a blog.
I recently started a blog because of these customisable functions – so Facebook…try and stop me.
3. Ken Burns Effect Cover Photo
Now, my natural instinct would be to suggest that you could put a video where your current cover photo…or maybe not. Facebook is visually static, I remember when I first saw an animated GIF and filled my MySpace page with them just like everyone else. It ended up being a horrific mix of cartoons and thrusting storm troopers that would completely destroy the uniform of Facebook (or any other website for that matter).
No. A slideshow of photos in your cover window with the Ken Burns photo effect would be a perfect fit.
4. Live Profile Pictures
The option to actually see people when their online – Of course this would include functions to be heavily limited to your friend group, but I just can’t be bothered to type chat sometimes – it’s a lot of effort to sum up the nights TV in writing to four people simultaneously.
Give us a customisable area on the timeline where we can physically see our friends.
Alternatively, simulate the use of video messages. Leaving a private or public video on your friend’s wall could be massive if Facebook tailored its functionality and focused on making it an easy task. With so many webcams built into devices – it’s a quick and easy way to share messages.
So come on Facebook – good work so far, but now is the time in your life cycle where you need to think radically about what technology can achieve for your company and your customers.
You created one of the world’s most innovative and successful companies; don’t think we expect anything less from you.
What do you think about the current state of Facebook? Good, or getting worse? If you have suggestions how to make it better, please share below.
[Image: Coletivo Mambembe]