timeline isn’t so bad

“Timeline is the story of your life…a new way to express who you are.” –Mark Zuckerberg

Since we spoke of Facebook today in class it sparked me to look into more about the “dreaded” Timeline. Considering that everyone I know is anti-timeline I thought I would look at both perspectives and pinpoint the main arguments of each. I am in fact a favor of Timeline. I originally hated it, but found it to be much more organized and user friendly than I had once negatively thought of it. When I was “forced to continue to the new timeline” I thought that I was going to have to delete my Facebook as a whole because of all the negative criticism I’d heard about the new format and website. The new Timeline is a merged version of the Wall the the Profile.

Timeline is going to take over everyones original Facebooks according to this article. Here, I learned that there will be more Timeline apps that are integrated with apps such as Pinterest.

I watched the ‘Introducing Timeline; Tell your story with a new kind of profile” video that is on the Facebook homepage before one even logs in. This shows the story of Andy Sparks; year after year. One of the most distinguishing features of the new Timeline is the “cover photo.” This is actually my favorite part of Timeline- allowing one to display a picture with them and their friends, their favorite scenery, or capturing a particular special moment. Currently, mine is of the UMW Lady Eagles celebrating the winning and advancing to the Elite 8 this past year. The reinvented Facebook timeline seems to be more described as an online scrapbook that one has collected and added to over many years. 

To thoroughly explain Timeline, I’m going to add the full online definition of it I found online:

“Since December 15, 2011, a Timeline is the new virtual space in which all the content of Facebook users will be organized and shown. Replacing the Facebook Profile, in a Timeline the photos, videos, and posts of any given user will be categorized according to the period of time in which they were uploaded or created. Posts and events are displayed along a timeline that runs through the center of the profile, with the option of adding events that occurred prior to the user joining Facebook as well as “hiding” posts. Some experts see this as a crucial step on the use of social networks.

In March 2012, Timeline became available for Facebook pages, and by the end of the month, Facebook had forced all pages to convert to the Timeline layout – against the will of many page admins.

Like the Wall, users can set Timeline privacy settings to change who can see their entire profile. Users’ friends have the ability to post messages on the user’s timeline” (Wikipedia).

As with much confusion with the Facebook timeline (we even discussed some points in class) there are many how to and help videos found on YouTube. This one in particular I found to be helpful in explaining the vivid Timeline feature. The timeline, on the far right can easily be scrolled through going through the years since one created their own individual Facebook. This is a feature I wasn’t aware of how to use so I found this video to be helpful. A “cooler feature” talked about was how one could view their profile as someone else. For example, there is a little drop down menu that one can “View As ____” to see how that person would be able to view your profile.

The next video I watched projected the “First Look: New Facebook Update” and further discussed the Timeline feature. Mark Watson (the speaker) talks about the cover photo and how to upload one. He also points out where ones common information is written. He then begins to explain the “maps” section, which I wans’t aware of how to use either. One criticism I have of the maps feature is that it’s not easily accessed through my Blackberry, rather I feel that it’s more easily accessed and browsed for iPhones or Droids. However, Watson explained how one can place a “pin” on the map leading to a popup or photo of that location and how it connects to the individual user of that Facebook profile. For example, Watson clicked on Berlin, Germany and a photo popped up of the date he uploaded the picture (while he was there) and how long he was there for. Its interesting because you can make this very personal by adding tags, such as “broke a bone here or learned a new language here.” I found this to be very fun and sentimental towards the particular user. This truly seemed like a scrapbook digitalized. Watson then touches on the layout. There are much larger photos and he visually shows the viewers that.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=oMDSzYZxh6I

Although I wouldn’t give up my cutting and pasting that I make for my scrapbooks I do think that this is a very easily organized “newer Facebook.” I found all of the online help tools to help me to enhance my Facebook experience. Timeline is definitely an experience of organization, which I am in favor of.

Now…. What will the next Twitter be??

  1 comment for “timeline isn’t so bad

  1. ebrennan
    April 19, 2012 at 4:12 am

    I am dreading the change to timeline! Hah you did some good research and made some good points, but I just cannot get behind it. I’m one of those people who are super private and, though I have a facebook, there’s very little content on it nor do I friend many people. Yeah okay, maybe I’m not using it right, but as one of thooose boring fb users, I also take almost no interest in what is going on with everyone else, and find timeline to be overly sharing of people’s lives. It’s not so much the layout or new features, because honestly change always seems dramatic until it fully happens. It’s more content and how much we’re being encouraged to document. But you did make it sound pretty cool as like this internet scrapbook and you know in 20 years, I might get a kick of looking back at this stuff, but right now I’m still trying to maintain a tangible identity outside of social media. Timeline encourages the opposite.

    PS: You can “View as _____” in your regular profile, as well. It’s in the top right next to Edit Profile for me!

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