The trials and tribbles of Facebook

Facebook just can’t leave well enough alone. They had a decent platform with a decent format, but lately they’ve “improved” it – and continue to do so incessantly. I expect by this time next year, Facebook will become Twitter so gradually that we’ll hardly notice until it’s too late. It’s halfway there already.

Facebook was going to buy Twitter but they couldn’t agree on some stuff so they didn’t. With their Facebook track record, I hope they don’t. Because you know what comes next – ads and “awesome” (read: fucktarded) applications.

When I first started using Facebook, it was a clean and relatively barren white board with some blue spacers and black text.

Then they came out with applications. Ok fine, whatever. I can deal with the 25 application requests per day clogging up my notifications box on the main page [grits teeth]. On second thought, no I don’t want to add Friend Hug, Booze Mail, Haikoo Zoo, Slide FunSpace, Animated Gifts, Friends For Sale!, Spongebob Squarepants, We’re Related, Rockstar Cars, My Boxofun, Speed Racing, FooPets!, Mob Wars, MY SEXY FRIENDS, OneTrack, or YoVille. This is an actual excerpt – that’s right, not the entire list – of applications I’ve blocked (not even the ones I simply ignored). So please, stop asking. I have unfriended people for excessive application spamming and I’ll do it again.

Then they came up with a new format. They took everything I liked about Facebook and shat all over it by making it take longer to load and way more complicated to navigate. They had a trial basis where you could try out the new format and send feedback. I tried it, hated it, sent my politely-worded yet constructive feedback (yes, it’s possible for me not to be snarky), all the while using the old format that I liked, until eventually I was forced to use the new one. You know those tabs other than the main page and user profile? Yeah me neither. I forgot about those too – because I almost never look at them. On mine or anyone else’s page. Separate pages for information on a social networking profile is needless – unless you care more about advertising (i.e., new ads on each loaded page) than user-friendly formatting.

Now there is another new format that essentially makes the function of “the wall” useless – or, at best, redundant. Rather than post something on a person’s wall, you basically post it as an announcement to everyone. Sound familiar? It should if you use Twitter. Because that’s almost the exact same goddamn thing. Except on Facebook this function has the benefit of being at least 3.5 times as annoying. Why? Because now you can’t comment on people’s posts from the main page anymore, you can only do this from the person’s wall. [Correction: This appears to have been a glitch that was fixed. I noticed today that comments can be made from the main page again. Which makes it even more like Twitter.] Yet to post something to someone, if you go to their wall to post something just for them, it shows up in the feed for all to see completely out of context! Yay!

And let’s not forget the recent terms of service fiasco.

Man alive. You’re really shitting the bed lately, Facebook.

I never got into the other social networking sites because they were often too busy, cluttered, or public. Facebook was simple, clean, private, and useful. You could post a little about yourself, there was space for people to write to you, you could post pictures, event information could be shared with multiple people in seconds, etc. You can still do a lot of those things, but the format turns me off and the 82 bajillion useless applications that my “friends” keep sending me are getting on my last nerve.

I’m [] this close, Facebook. If using Facebook becomes more hassle than novelty/convenience, I’m done. Remember ICQ? Yeah neither does anyone who uses MSN. Remember MSN? Yeah neither does anyone who uses Facebook. Do you want people saying “Remember Facebook? neither does anyone who uses [Twitter or some other simple, usable website]”? No? Then cut the crap.

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