September 25, 2011

The new Facebook Timeline will be so cool--here's why

Blog, it's been like a soap opera on Facebook this week...

  • Will the new "news ticker" drive us all into going postal?
  • What "huge change" is coming this week that will "revolutionize the Facebook experience?
  • Will our friends flee to Google+?
  • Will the FB versus + question accelerate into a battle that rivals PC versus Mac?
  • And what about Naomi?

People do panic about change, Blog...which I find interesting because dealing with change is, by now, a part of everyday life. Be that as it may, change can be good or bad, and we'll never all agree on which one. My personal opinion is that I'm going to love the new Facebook Timeline, and for what it's worth, here's why.

[The Timeline feature launches automatically the end of this week...I got a jump on it by following this easy tutorial.]

The Timeline turns your past record on Facebook into a sort of digital scrapbook. Your profile page becomes a two-column, magazine-style illustrated narrative. It does this automatically. You can tweak it, but you don't have to put more than five minutes' effort into it if you don't want to. For example, I created a new image for the "cover" picture. The profile looks like the image above right, Blog--or did at that time.

The little do-hickey at the upper right lets you pinpoint anytime since you were born. And key events, like family members' births and your graduation year, are already on the Timeline based on information you and those users already put in Facebook. You can add photos (I put in baby and high school graduation photos of myself) and "life events" as you see fit.

You can also delete anything you choose from the Timeline if it's lame, boring, or embarrassing. The post stays in the database but disappears from the Timeline. It's just another way to make it into the "scrapbook" you want it to be.

I discovered, looking at my Timeline, that it seems I accidentally have been the kind of Facebook user who will doubtless benefit most from this feature. I post a lot of photos and videos, and chronicle fun and interesting events both personal and pop culture. Text-heavy posters may not find the Timeline so exciting, but many of us will really enjoy just perusing past weeks. I did, and it made me laugh and smile and generally feel fortunate to have my life, home, family and friends.

So, as for how I'm finding this changes my outlook as a Facebook user: Already yesterday I found myself thinking in terms of how best to chronicle the day and capture the mood. So, when I decorated the house for fall, I made sure to post some pics. I might have done this anyway, but I was even more motivated knowing I could eventually be looking back at the day from years in the future.

Blog, there's nothing truer than the old adage, "You can't please all of the people all of the time." I know some Facebook users will hate the new features, some will gripe at first but learn to live with them, most will roll with the changes without too much fuss. But some of us are really, really going to like the Timeline and it will actually enhance our lives a bit.

1 comment:

  1. I wish they'd hurry the heck up and roll it out already!