In news that likely won’t have a major impact, though may require manual intervention from some users, Facebook has announced that it’s removing video profile images as of February 7th, with people who currently have a video profile image being reverted back to a still picture instead.
As you can see in this notification, posted by user Andrew Curry (and shared by Matt Navarra), Facebook is doing away with profile videos entirely, which it had once hoped would be a more fun, more engaging way to bring user profiles to life in the app.
Originally launched in 2015, profile videos enable users to upload a 7-second video clip, which then loops on repeat, adding an animated, engaging element to their Facebook presence.
It hasn’t been a highly used feature, but some people have been able to create interesting, even entertaining profile video clips, which adds to the personality of their profile.
But clearly, support of the option is outweighing user value. Facebook stopped users from uploading profile videos sometime last year, and now, it’s removing the functionality entirely, which, as per the above notification, will mean that people currently using profile videos will need to switch to a still image, or Facebook will revert them to their video cover image (i.e. what you currently see for that profile in the News Feed) as the main profile display.
It’s not a major shift, and again, I doubt it will impact many users, nor that many people will care. But if you do have a video profile image, prepare to say goodbye to your clever, 7-second clip that encapsulated your ‘crazy’ personality.
Because really, those were probably the people who used it most, right? The zany types who are keen to stand out, by posting videos of themselves blowing bubbles or waving at the camera like a game show contestant in the intro sequence.
For these users, it could be an annoyance, but given the breadth of tools you now have to express yourself in social apps, I doubt the change will have a big impact.