Wag The Dog Agency's Blog

One button to unite them all
February 28, 2011, 5:24 PM
Filed under: Uncategorized

Facebook has taken something from the Frodo, Sam and the LOTR series and finally realized that the most power lies in simplicity.  They are going for a ‘one button to unite them all’ approach, by effectively simplifying the range of buttons (and other stuff) available to publishers wanting to integrate Facebook into their sites.

Previously publishers were faced with a rather bewildering array of options – including ‘Like’ (in various flavours), ‘Share’ and ‘Recommend’ plus other, older choices.

They have now introduced a new ‘Like’ button that combines the functions of the old ‘Like’ and ‘Share’ button,with the comment option switched ‘on’ as a default – which more or less reduces the range to one.

So, the new ‘Like’ button actually performs much of the same stuff the old ‘Share’ button did, re-publishing a headline, an excerpt of copy from the publisher or the article, plus a thumbnail – but without the user needing to give extra permission for this to happen which was required from uses using the old button. Plus the comment option is always enabled, which encourages further, user generated, content.

The new content resulting from use of the button (article stuff and comments) is also favorably (read: higher) raked by Facebook, meaning it will be seen more often, near the top in news feeds that other recent user activity stories generated by you or your friends.

What do we think?

Well for one Facebook, as I’m sure they are hoping, should become a more powerful ally in terms of the amount of traffic that their shared links provide to sites, and so all of this will help make the case for the new forms of paid Facebook ads such as the promoted stories which were recently introduced.

It’s definitely a good move for FB, and potentially one that helps publishers.   It can be argued that users ‘lose out’ as their permissions are not sought, but I’m sure FB and publishers will argue that users benefit from the move as they are better able to review content before visiting a site if they have a bigger look at it in their news feed – and there is an element of truth to that.

You can get a longer look at and review of the change on the Inside Facebook blog.

1 Comment so far
Leave a comment

So, are you saying facebook is essentially evil?

Comment by Mark Finney

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