Not too long ago I wrote about Twitter taking a page from Facebook with the new "Twitter Header." But it seems that the sharing of good ideas goes both ways. Today I went to look at my favorite MarketMeSuite CTO's facebook profile to find out that the "Subscriber" section is now named "Followers."
This is more than just wording though. Facebook has launched a whole initiative around this.
How To Turn On Follow
There are two ways. The first is go to any friend's page and click on Followers. At the top of the page Facebook will ask you if you want Followers of your own:
Or, you can go directly to Facebook.com/about/follow
You will now see "Followers" on your Facebook profile page. (As you can see I have no followers yet having just turned it on, so feel free to follow me!)
Although at first glance Follow could seem like it's removing more of the "Friend to Friend" privacy that we often associate with Facebook, the settings are actually moving to help stop those unwanted random friend requests. You can set your follow so that only friends of friends can ever send you a friend request. If not, they can only follow you, which means they only see content that you have decided is public. You can set your post settings at the time of posting or in your universal privacy settings (which would apply to any device / application you post from).
A More Twitterized Facebook?
The motivation is unclear, but allowing Facebook users to maintain a public presence on a network that is mostly known for a more private web of friends and acquaintances certainly feels more like Twitter. The question is, will people want to use Facebook in this way? Will bloggers like myself be ending posts asking people to follow on Twitter (@Tammykfennell) and on Facebook (facebook.com/TammyKahnFennell) -- I'd love your thoughts!