And yet, at the same time, Facebook continues to change its operations and site to better make its advertisers and business partners happy, no matter how unpopular similar actions have been in the past among users and privacy regulators. It's an amazing dichotomy -- one so stark that you might wonder if Facebook actually suffers from some corporate version of multiple-personality disorder.
Facebook wants to take over the virtual world. Literally. Look at some of the activities it's currently pursuing:
- Facebook acquired a local ad start-up, which is a perfect extension of its current business. Figure it will soon add local daily deals through an acquisition.
- There will be extensive integration between Facebook and Netflix (NFLX). That's paid video on demand.
- Buying recruiting service Pursuit turns Facebook into a professional tool, as well, especially as few LinkedIn customers regularly use the site, as my BNET colleague Jim Edwards has reported.
- Facebook plans to resume sharing addresses and mobile phone numbers with applications. Sure, someone would have to click a button allowing the use of data, but how often do people click things, not realizing exactly what is going on, or even doing so accidentally by hitting the space bar or enter key?
- The company plans to replace the Share button with the Like button. Click Like on a story and suddenly the headline, thumbnail image, and blurb appear on your profile wall. Previously, you had to click the Share button. It's clearly an attempt to keep media companies happy with more pervasive promotion of their work, but a lot of people won't like it. And what happens if you "like" a commercial site or product? Do ads appear?
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