facebook changes

Facebook Changes to Recapture the Emotional Experience: Get Ready to Get Uncomfortable

By Media, Public Relations

I had trouble sleeping last night, not an unusual condition but the unfortunate combination of Dexter in the background as I worked and monitoring of the Troy Davis story as it unfolded. When I did fitfully sleep between 4am and 7am or so (as has become my custom) I had nightmares full of murder and blood.

And I’m OK with that.

I don’t inject politics into my online presence; I’m a business owner and a PR person — I know that’s not appropriate. But as a human being I’m not bothered by telling you that I’m against the death penalty. As an American I will tell you that I think we (the Supreme Court, the justice system, America) failed last night and that troubles me, and it should.

It’s my custom (job, habit) to stay connect to my social networks almost constantly. I was fascinated, then, to watch a division of content unfold. The conversation on Facebook appeared wrapped up in the many layout changes the platform introduced yesterday. You may have heard; people didn’t like them. This series of status updates had a span of uninteresting to “eyeroll.”

On Twitter the conversation was vastly different. Troy Davis was the topic, by and large, with other content looking like an intrusion, an interruption from the guy who enters a room and starts talking before taking a glance around. I learned from it, was enriched by it, moved by people I follow and the passion they shared with the rest of us. That’s important, because if nothing else, a social network should have the ability to move, mobilize and activate people for change. It should be a tool to bind us together for a common purpose. It should be a vehicle for communication when news is taking place right now and help is needed to save lives and make the world a better place.

There are early reports that Facebook’s recent changes are just the trailer for a full-length feature of changes about to debut. Mashable, a trustworthy source for social media news, reports that we should be prepared to see beginning this week. Ben Parr writes,


I have seen what Facebook is launching on Thursday, and it’s going to change the world of social media. And while I won’t talk about the mind-boggling things Facebook will be launching, I will say this: The Facebook you know and (don’t) love will be forever transformed. The news that will come out of Facebook during the next few weeks will be the biggest things to come out of the company since the launch of the Facebook Platform.

Parr continues to address Facebook’s growing problem of being able to tap into emotional engagement (which was demonstrated beautifully, coincidentally, last night.) What’s going to happen, is that the platform will evolve with a way to do this, and do it better than any other currently active platform.

We’ll see.

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