You know, I have never really liked Facebook. I use it, and a like the interaction between people, but I absolutely hate the 'usability'. They just don't get it.
You know, Facebook is this strange place. They have more success than any other "social" site on the planet. And yet, all they do is to repeatedly suck at doing something good.
The latest insane move happened just a few hours ago, when Facebook decided to ruin the Facebook pages, and replace them with something completely useless.
Yesterday, people, groups and companies could make their own Facebook page - promoting a cause, or just create a place for people to share a common interest. And the Facebook pages actually worked. Their owners could reorganize the page to best suit the content. They could add custom made apps, to enhance the experience - and you could generally create something worthwhile. Something usable.
But now, Facebook have decided that pages should use the same inflexible crappy layout as you have on your own profile. Meaning that custom content is placed under the "boxes" tab, "interactions" is only visible on the wall tab, photos on the photos tab, and info about the site is under the info tab.
(see: Baekdal.com Facebook page)
This is the most ridicules thing I have ever seen. Before you could mix all these things to create the best experience, to really enhance the message. Give people what they wanted, and allow them to respond directly.
Now everyone is forced to navigate around. Go to one tab to get info, go to another to get an experience, go to a third to leave a comment.
They had a goldmine in their hands, a place for people to get together, a place for communities to develop, a place for companies to share the fun... And they threw it all away.
Facebook just got a lot less interesting for business to engage with. And it also just got a lot less interesting for people, because this limits what kinds of interaction you can have.
Taking away control, and replacing it with complexity is just not the way to create a great product.
You either take away control, and replace it with something that is clean, easy and efficient (like Apple), or you give people more control, but make it very simple to work with.
Update: ZDNet don't like it either
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"Thomas Baekdal is one of Scandinavia's most sought-after experts in the digitization of media companies. He has made himself known for his analysis of how digitization has changed the way we consume media."
Swedish business magazine, Resumé