Facebook app update report: ANNOYING.

(Took forever to load, too.)

I wonder if Facebook use is going to drop after its latest update, and by how much?

Facebook’s most recent application upgrade included a bunch of reviled “features.” My favorite required me to ask every one of my friends to go into THEIR privacy settings and untick a box to keep my unrelated moves out of their news feed. Before the upgrade, by managing OUR privacy settings we could control what information even our friends saw, and now total strangers are privy to every move we make.

Hi, classy girls I don’t give a Hefe about! I don’t know any of them, and I don’t know El Hefe, but when someone I know who knows El Hefe decides to comment on the photo, it’s readily available for me to see. I can even comment on it, if I’d like to! Thanks to timeline, privacy controls on Facebook are as elusive as world peace.

Next, today’s app upgrade eliminated my ability to look at chronologically based News Feed updates after the first two or three. I can cheat the web version by making a custom list of 99% of my friends, which when selected shows me updates by time. (The previous app version also allowed this.) Now, only a Facebook algorhythm can decide what’s important for me to see — not me.

When Netflix made a couple of bone-headed moves that showed how out of touch it had become with the users who support it, people screamed — loud and fast — about not using the service, and the company today reversed its plans. (At least the part about splitting into two. Pricing not reversed.)

Would the same ever happen to Facebook? Most people wouldn’t cancel their Facebook accounts, but what if they’re so annoyed by changes they didn’t ask for that they don’t log in as much, significantly reducing traffic? The web update is so user-unfriendly that that I’ve probably dropped my Facebook use by at least 1/4. And this unintuitive app update — here’s how the company WANTS you to use Facebook, not how you’d LIKE to use it — means I’ll be using it even less.

Up until now, people have usually responded with, “If you don’t like it, quit. Nobody’s making you use it.” What if instead of quitting, usage instead crawled to a slow? Would that be enough for Facebook to right a misguided move? What do you think the tipping point might be?


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