There is no other quote that one could use to lead into a story like this except, “It’s like deja vu, all over again.” Thank you, Yogi Berra.
Really, what do you do with the number one social networking site after you’ve added so much crap, like Facebook Apps, Facebook Ads, more quizzes than you can shake a stick at, Farmville, YoVille, Whateverville. People in general seem to love all those bells, whistles and doodads. If they didn’t, would Facebook and the independent developers keep putting it out there?
Well, there are some, myself included, that miss the Facebook we signed up for. It seems like just three years ago, you could use Facebook to send simple notes to all your friends. You could look up old friends. You could share a wee little part of your daily life with old and new chums. Facebook seemed to be to the Internet what party lines were to the phone world – a quick way to catch up on the gossip.
For whatever reason, Facebook has decided that the newest thing they could do is to give us something old again. Introducing Facebook Lite Beta. Why not? It worked for the Ford Mustang and the Dodge Challenger.
The first thing you’ll notice when you sign in is, well, nothing. Lots of nothing. Lots of white space. You can actually focus on what your friends are saying, again. The signal-to-noise ratio is definitely favouring signal now. Begone pesky mobs and vampires!
Look at that profile. All you are getting there is pure, unadulterated, me. No hatching eggs or drinks or pinches. No silly animations or untasteful pictures. You’ve got my Wall, my Info, my Friends and my Photos & Videos.
The interesting thing about being in the FacebookLite version is that anyone else’s profile you view, you’ll see the FacebookLite version. It separates the wheat from the chaff, so to speak. Do you really need to know what my Redneck Name is? I’m from Alberta. My Redneck Name IS my name!
I suspect that the Facebook developers are also going to streamline the Settings as well. Hopefully, this will be done in favour of privacy. It seems to me that as Facebook grew and grew, more things were defaulted to public settings. If any FacebookLite developers are reading this, I suggest that the settings be defaulted to the most private settings possible.
At the time of writing this, most of these settings were unavailable to use. Facebook Lite is still in the beta phase. Which seems odd, since this was done once before, wasn’t it?
The new Events page also receives a big thumbs up from my tired, overworked eyes. Even after a 15 hour work day, I can look at it and know what’s going on. Which is good because I like to know what I’m missing. Remind me to send belated birthday greetings next week. The brilliance is in the simplicity, once again.
If you get the chance to login to the Facebook Lite beta, I encourage you to invite friends to it. Keep in mind that the beta is only available to the US and India right now. Yet I live in Canada and I’m on it.
Send feedback to the Facebook Lite developers. Let them know that you enjoy the simple life of Facebook Lite. It appears that the intent is to offer both versions, so it wouldn’t hurt to encourage the release of Facebook Lite for all your web friends, like me, that are sick of the clutter we were trying to get away from on MySpace by going to Facebook.
Have you tried the Facebook Lite beta? How do you like it? What would you like to see differently? Please share with our other readers in the comments below.
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