So Facebook is changing…again [wait for gasps and astonishment to subside].

I’m not against change as a rule, but I am annoyed with constant change in a user interface (how you click around a site) without informed user studies (asking us what we want to change or keep the same).  But all that aside, I have bigger concerns about Facebook’s new “Timeline” and developer application changes.

First, the Timeline is a “new way to express yourself” according to Zuckerberg (that young fella that invented Facebook, more or less).  It’s kind of like Facebook meets Twitter with pictures.  Or what I like to call, another avenue to feed our narcissism, but I digress.  I hope this is a voluntary option as opposed to an “opt-out” program (like so many of Facebook’s changes).  Indeed, with the last change Facebook made (“top stories”), the algorithms and coding decided for us what a top story is, and puts those at the top of our news feeds that we read about our friends. Kind of like Google’s search algorithms that filter our search results based on a variety of demographic factors.  In other words, the high-end and techies of high-use programs are writing programs that limit what we see without our consent.  That’s called censorship people, and it’s being done right under our noses.

Further, the Timeline goes back as far as you’ve been on Facebook (presumably), and puts all of your actions/updates/etc. in one place.  You know, so someone can look and discover a whole lot about you in one glance instead of taking the usual, longer methods of stalking, um, I mean surveillance…wait, I mean perfectly innocent exploration about their “friend.” Sure, it’s up to us (apparently) to edit this stream of visual faux pas, but we all act responsibly when it comes to posting our lives on the internet, right?

Secondly, Zuckerberg announced that you can use applications within Facebook to virtually join your friends to listen to music or watch shows.  You know, in case actually getting together for a real social event is just too much of a bother.  Plus, all those new developers and companies can now more easily download all that info about you to bombard you with more “targeted” ads, because that’s just what we all need—more opportunities to rebuff those marketers attempting to convince us to buy products we don’t actually need.  I wonder how much money the marketers paid Zuckerberg to allow them to tap into his audience of 800+ million users?

Maybe it is time for me and like-minded people to move over to Google+.  I’m sure we have a few years before massive exploitation on that site…