Social Box

Facebook Timeline – the Good, the Bad & the Ugly

Facebook users who have had accounts prior to 2007 have been the guinea of social media. With the initial introduction of this network being introduced years ago, it has been the victim of constant improvement. The “scientists” at Zuckerberg’s lab have continuously been changing the layout, interaction methods and applications of the social giant Facebook. Each time they have succeeded in making the platform more user-friendly and convenient. New features have included the the Home page showing live updates in the form of a real-time news feed, the integration of Facebook chat and Facebook mobile applications. Image

My initial reaction to the Timeline feature was disgust and dislike. I did not want to have a profile which was all over the place, being displayed in two columns with a cover photo at the top. Finally the day I had been dreading arrived – when Facebook forcefully took away my old interface and integrated the new one. At first I was confused about the features and the new layout, however the engineers had thoughtfully included a guideline at the top of the page – giving users a step-by-step on how the new Timeline feature works.

The Good

Growing accustomed to the new Timeline layout, I have grown to actually like it. It portrays an individual’s profile in an interesting manner, scattering images and updates in a two-column layout which spreads across the spinal-timeline. For people who upload a lot of images, their profile takes on a photo-book kind of persona, whilst people with multiple status updates and check-ins are able to have a map of their thoughts and activities. Whether you want your profile to reflect a scrapbook or an empty book is your own decision, but Facebook has definitely raised the bar for any social networking site by providing a feature which documents an individuals entire life – provided that they are an active user.

The Bad

The features which bother me the most about the timeline feature is the two-column display. Being used to the previous Facebook layout, users have become familiar with reading news feed in a mono-column manner. It is not a feature that completely wipes out the social media platform because, as of 2012 – all users registered will only know the new layout, thus never experiencing the original Facebook layout. Additionally, the Timeline change has also reiterated the complicated privacy settings which have become a bit tricky to manage. Users have the ability to control profile privacy to the smallest details, however the process of HOW has not been make clear yet. 

The Ugly

Many people are getting frustrated with the constant updates to this social media website. Although it is the only way that we will ever experience progress and improvement, the constant flow of updates in layout and communication is essentially becoming tiresome and difficult to keep up with. This is the ugly truth, not matter how used to we get to timeline, Facebook will eventually introduce an update which will – once again – hustle our social profiles. However, I think its imperative that we keep improving and developing social platforms such as Facebook in order to obtain maximum benefits from social media.

Keep calm and carry Zuckerberg, we look forward to your next breakthrough. 


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