Monday, April 2, 2012

Facebook Introduces Its New Timeline

Get used to the new feature, it is now mandatory for everybody

By Lukas Vallo

Facebook has made the most visible change since its origin in 2006. Introducing the new Timeline has brought not only visual changes, but functional ones as well. The new Timeline became mandatory for all users on March 30, and there is no going back.

Facebook is the most popular social media platform in the world, with more than 175 million people logging in every day. The new Timeline has brought a number of changes, starting with a new home page, which evolved dramatically with more options and better-organized content.

The owners of Facebook say that the change was made to modernize the home page, which is meant to be a central location for all your stories, likes and content, now arranged in the  chronological order in which it was posted to Facebook. Users will have better access to all the information they have ever posted or liked, and can access this information at any time.

However, many user voices have been raised in protest. They say that the new Timeline brought only confusion, and exposes too much of their privacy.

Jan Perla
Jan Perla is an online media professional and social media maniac who works for a prestigious advertising company, OgilvyInteractive. We were interested in his opinion about the potential for confusion, and whether the changes are really beneficial for Facebook users. According to Perla, the new Timeline is a better platform, as users can manage their content easily and now have all their information in one place. They have a better chance to promote themselves, express their personality and create their life events.

“The confusion won’t last too long, people will get used to the new Facebook,” Perla believes.

What is new in Timeline?

Cover photo
The first thing that you notice when changing your old Facebook profile to Timeline is the cover picture, which is quite large. The full page-width picture is used by people to tell something about themselves, what kind of person they are and what they like.

Another new feature is the actual content of the home page. You can scroll down and see the “activity log,” which shows every activity you ever did on Facebook, and each activity in which you were involved (tagged photos, people talking about you, etc.). If you think that something should be hidden or deleted, you can do so in the upper-right corner of the specific post. You may also choose who can see the content. You can scroll your activities by the year they happened – this appears on the right side of the screen, under personalized advertising.

Life events
The new Timeline gives you an opportunity to add a life event to your Facebook page. You can choose from a long list of options, or you can add your own event that has played an important role in your life. From your first kiss to your trip to Rio de Janeiro, you can choose whatever you want.

Activity log
The Activity log button shows all your activity on Facebook, not including the activities of others that involved you. This is just a way to access all your activity and see what you posted, liked or commented on.

Making the best out of Timeline
Those of you who are creative enough can set the cover photo with the profile picture so they create an interesting scenario. If you want to do so, here are some creative tips on how you can differ from other users:

What do our schoolmates think about the new Timeline?

Name: Srna Begović
Major: Psychology
Year: 3rd

What do you think about it?
I don’t necessarily feel pro or con about it. It’s a nice change, and I like that the pictures are larger.
Anything else you like about it?
Change is always nice to keep people from getting bored. Plus, it takes a lot less scrolling to see what you’ve been up to waaaay back when.

Name: Olga Danyukova
Major: Business Administration
Year: 4th

What do you think about it?
I think that Facebook didn’t have to change the old version.
Why do you dislike the new version?
The thing that I dislike most about the new Timeline is that it is too complicated and it confuses me.

Name: Denisa Kubačková
Major: Communication and Mass Media
Year: 1st

What do you think about it?
From my point of view, it was not necessary to have Timeline on Facebook, I think the old version was better. People liked it more because it was not so difficult for orientation. On the other hand, it is good to access photos by the year they were posted.
Why don’t you like the new version?
I cannot say that I don’t like it, I just think that the old version was easier for everyone to use.

Name: Bela Czokoly
Major: International Economic Relations
Year: 2nd

What do you think about it?
I think the original idea of putting pictures, events and friends in a chronological order which should create a story of your life sounds good. On the other side, I am not quite sure that they upgraded every detail in a useful way, not just the innovative way.
What do you like about the new version?
I like the idea of putting the pictures in chronological order, so when your friends want to see what you did last summer, they can check it out. I also like the option of choosing the cover picture for your profile; that way, you can show your interests and your hobbies.

For a good overview of the new Timeline features:

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