The movie is out, and the debate has begun.
Is Mark Zuckerberg a rebel visionary with an unwavering focus on the future who did what he needed to do to be successful (as the younger generation viewed him after the movie), or a tragic figure who lost himself and his soul, as well as his only friend, on the way to world dominance (as the older generation saw him).
Is Facebook really the end all, beat all juggernaut that some people think it is?
Well, I for one, would claim absolutely not.
Can it be beaten? Is there a bigger better mouse trap out there?
I question where the “revolution” will start.
Or is it a rebellion?
I’ve long contended Facebook “does not work”.
When I make that claim people look at me as if I’m crazy.
The argument is easy, and more so around what facebook isn’t, than what it is.
Let’s begin with the younger generation. This was the group that lead into MySpace. FB started with the .edu mandate to join, again as a focus on the younger generation.
What is happening how? There is a pent up desire for kids to leave. You can just hear them starting to scream…..this isn’t your same old facebook anymore. Why?
When your teacher, and employer are on your social network, it’s bad enough. However, the moral dilemma that occurs when you get your “friend request” from your MOM!!! Or Grandmother. Or Aunt…
Well, that’s almost too much for the cool crowd to handle.
Yes, that starts to make FB “uncool”, which means the tastemakers, mavens, and trendsters are looking for the next cool place to be.
On the business side- well where should I start?
I stopped using facebook very much (well, actually I never started), because it’s a non-functioning mess.
Why? Here is a list of reasons I think FB doesn’t work well for a business side.
1- They STEAL your contacts. Yes, that’s right steal. How? If you try to use the friend finder function with your outlook contacts, FB will take “ALL “ of your contacts and email an invitation to them. That’s right- ALL! To complicate matters, FB continues to send this “invitation” out from you inviting everyone to join. This is friends, family, employer’s, girlfriends, wives, ex’s, yes…everyone! Can you stop this? NOPE! There is no functioning way to stop the invitations.
2- No way to email your friends? Yes, you can post to a wall, and that information gets lost in a jumbled mess. So, you’re all excited you have a few thousand friends- can you email them? Nope!
3- So, you can’t email all your friends, and all your friends are invited in. Can you “export” your friends? Can you export the email of “your” supposed contacts? NOPE! FB OWNS!! Your contacts. Yes, you can have 5,000 friends. How do you get the email out? One contact at a time. And you think they are your friends? Yes, you’ve bought into the FB Kool-Aid.
4- The email client SUCKS! I have people who constantly want to email me in facebook? Why? The email gets lost in the 50-80 email invitation, announcement, evites, etc. that I get per day. You can’t effectively search, sort, file, or organize the email. Why in the world would you ever use FB for email?
5- Luckily this is gone—but for the longest time if I got hit with one more octopus, kissed by a sheep, or asked to water some stupid persons plant…well, I would have started my own mafia war against the people sending me the stupid crap.
6- Friend map? Business map? I think they may be fixing this with their location services, but why in the heck have I not been able to just click on a map and see all of my friends or associates and see where they are?
7- Like button? This one is killing me! Just because I click like on something doesn’t mean I want every post, comment, and dribble related to that person. If I click on like, the EVERY response and EVERY person that replies to that post, ends up in a notification to me. I just wanted to say I like something- not that I now want the puke of information associated with it. Any way to turn that feature off? Nope!
8- Simple functionality of getting out of a group? NOPE. For some reason I’m part of about 80 groups. I’m still not sure how I ended up in them, but I’m there. So, in an effort to clean that up, I tried to remove myself from the group. Has anyone else tried that?
9- Fake profiles and fan pages. Yep, that’s right. If you become a bigger and bigger name- whether it’s a tech titan or entertainer- there is no way to stop fake profiles or fan sites. So, even if you are “really” in FB with a fan page, there is no assurance that yours will be the only one with your name. Want to talk about damage control issues? It’s only a matter of time till someone creates a fake fan page for a celebrity, gets thousands of friends, and then does or posts something nefarious as a way to destroy that person.
10- Friend buckets? Yes, you can finally organize your friends in lists. However you still can’t email that “list” or group, or export it, or put a friend in multiple lists, so there is really no way to organize FB as a communication tool.
11- Everything, posted to everyone, every time. Again, this is back to control of information. Every time you accept a friend, like something, or make a post- you’re entire friend list is notified. As much as FB talks about privacy controls, this is one area they have still never addressed. Why is the important? Well in Ken’s case (as an example and to see if anyone is really still reading my own dribble at this point), let’s say Ken Rutkowski likes….Glee!! (which he does actually). If he “likes” Glee on the facebook page- does he really want his entire network to be notified of that? I would argue quite possibly not.
12- Filtered friend posts? Again, this one may be finally fixed, but I’m not sure. To have the ability to “pick” the feeds or posts you want from only certain friends, would certainly help make the puke post page more relevant from a business sense.
13- Organized content? Yes, you can create photo albums. And you can upload video. And you can post comments. BUT…can you organize ALL of that together for easy reference? Of course not! What do I mean? Simple example- Let’s say you are on a panel at a great event. You have some cool pictures from the event, and the panel and the party. You have a couple of video clips of you speaking. And you wrote some brilliant posts that show amazing insight. Where does all of that reside on FB? In a solid, jumbled, and unconnected mess. Wouldn’t it make sense to be able to create a “channel” where ALL of the content with that activity is aggregated together? You could have a family channel, a business channel, a speaking channel, etc.
14- Controlled access to your channel? From #13 above, if you had a family channel- where you had family photos, etc. Would you want your entire network to have access to that? NO! You should be able to control who can access what content.
15- Friends, Family, and Business. Are they all the same? Would you want the same information shared with each? I would say not. So, in the end, you may end up with TWO FB profiles. One that is only family, and one that is more public or for business. You end up trying to manage two profiles. However, my guess is most of us here are early adopters, so we joined FB early. That means our friends are one big coalesced mess. If I wanted to create a private and family profile at this point, it would be almost impossible. I could go through and select and email a notice to the friends I want to move over. So, yes, I’m stuck.
Anyway, I don’t want to go on and on…as I do have work to get done. If any of you have made it this far down…then you’ve wasted enough time too. Get back to work.
And ps- Playing and posting in Facebook is not work.