This week Facebook announced that users can opt to have their purchases on sites such as Blockbuster.com and Fandango.com appear on the site's popular news feed, which shows a running ticker of friends' activities, along with an advertisement. Also, companies and brands will be able to set up profile pages for free.
Advertisers are eager to get to Facebook's 50 million active users. But are those users eager to get product tips and advertising? Not so much, it seems. Facebook's announcement is being met with a serious backlash. To capture the gist of the reaction, just look at this headline from blogger Nick Antosca on today's Huffington Post: "Facebook.com: Incredibly Overbearing and Terrible." Antosca goes on to conclude that,
Facebook in general has been getting worse and worse. It used to be a streamlined and intuitive network; now it's messy, ugly, intrusive. All these applications that automatically send invitations (Do I want to take a movie quiz? Do I want to bite someone? Do I want to buy a pony?) are the Facebook version of panhandlers on the subway, and the lack of a capability to put absolute filters on the news feed means that you can't accept anyone's friend request without reading about everything they do.Or how about this commentary from today's 23/6 blog:
If having your relationship status broadcast to all of your "online friends" wasn't enough, Facebook has unveiled plans to inject advertisements into its members' conversations, based on that particular member's interests. If this isn't another reason to drop Facebook and MySpace for that matter, I don't know what is... I left Facebook and MySpace two weeks ago.Enjoying your Facebook schadenfreude? You can get many more doses of blog delivered reality courtesy Business Week's, The Tech Beat blog, which is providing a handy round-up of the Facebook backlash.
All this Facebook hatred can't be good news for Microsoft which recently purchased a relatively small share in the social networking site. How come the software giant always seems to arrive late to every online party?