Facebook, New and Improved on the Social Web

New and Improved on the Social Web: Delicious and Facebook

7 Comments 07 October 2011

This week I’m launching a regular blog feature called “New and Improved on the Social Web.” The social media landscape continually iterates, and it’s hard to keep up with all the changes. Platforms and apps I know and love suddenly have new capabilities, add-ons, and changes. In this regular roundup, I’ll be highlighting some of the latest changes and iterations to social media platforms, apps and tools, and commenting on their implications. This week, I’m discussing changes to delicious (social bookmarking) and Facebook.

Delicious stacks

Delicious, the social bookmarking site, just rolled out a completely new web interface as well as a new product, delicious stacks. The new interface is fun and updated, and brings the brand experience in line with today’s web experience and expectations. While delicious has always enabled users to bookmark, tag, and publicly share bookmarked URLs and tags, users were not been able to compile sharable topic areas. The new feature, Stacks, is delicious’ version of publicly curated content streams. Any delicious user may create a topic (called a stack) and add links from around the web to that create a stack of the topic. Delicious users can follow stacks, share stacks with others, and save individual links within others’ stacks.

With the stacks rollout, delicious is clearly trying to be a player in the content curation trend. If this succeeds, stacks could easily compete with other curation tools such as Google Reader, scoop.it and Pearltrees.

Changes to Facebook Pages

Facebook announced a lot of upcoming changes to Facebook at their F8 developer conference in September. Some of those changes are rolling out now, with implications for your page.

Open commenting allowed on page walls and posts

One of the more significant changes to your page is that any Facebook user can Like or comment on your page’s posts and post to its wall, without Liking the your page first. Just as you had previously managed your settings to allow fans to write or post content to your Facebook wall, the new permission allows “users” to do so. One note: this is an automatic “opt-out” change – if you allowed fans to post, the new settings automatically allow any Facebook user to post.

Potentially more people will post to your page and Like its content because they can interact with it more easily. Ideally, more Facebook users will see your content because the increased commenting will appear in users’ newsfeeds (now called “tickers.”) A user still has to Like a page for that specific page’s updates to show up in his/her ticker. On the other hand, there is less incentive to Like a page if a user just wants to post or comment. The largest implication I see is that page admins now have an even better incentive to create engaging and sharable content.

“People are Talking About”(PATA) metric and new Insights

The new metric appears below your page’s Likes, on the left-hand side of the wall. It is Facebook’s attempt to benchmark and reveal how engaging your page’s content is. The PATA metric includes people who “have created a story about your post,” and creating a “story” includes people who:

– like, share, or comment on a post either on the wall
– answer a Question on your page
– mention your page or tag it or a photo of yours
– like or share a check-in deal, or check-in in at your Facebook Place

The new Facebook Insights offers a more subtle breakdown of engagement by individual post than the old Insights. The previous individual Post Impressions metric has been replaced with multiple engagement metrics: Reach, Engaged Users, Talking About This, and Virality.

According to Search Engine Land’s comprehensive summary of the new Insights:

“The goal of Pages insights for Page admins is to understand what drives that number and how they can best engage their advocates, so that they can get a sense of how to optimize their Page content to increase the people they’re reaching with their messages.  Which means that no matter the size of your Page’s audience, you can really get a good sense for which posts spread and get shared with others.”

 

I believe the new Insights will offer admins a more accurate sense of how engaging their pages’ content is with fans. If nonprofits are using social media to move online fans to take action, and to help the organization further its mission of changing the world, then creating more online engagement is a critical step in that path.

Recommended reading list for information about Facebook’s recent changes

Demystifying Facebook’s “People Are Talking About This” Metric from Search Engine Land

Is The New Facebook “People Are Talking About” Metric Useless? from Beth Kanter

Notes from Mari Smith’s Facebook Changes Webinar from Mari Smith via Beth Kanter

Five Recent Upgrades to Facebook Pages Your Nonprofit May Not Know About from Nonprofitorgs

Seven Ways Facebook’s Subscribe Button Could Be A Game Changer from John Haydon

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  • Thanks for explaining the delicious stacks! I have been a long-time delicious user, but haven’t dug in to the new interface deeply. I would much rather use delicious as my curation mechanism, since I’m already tagging bookmarks there instead of Scoop.it, et. al. 

    [Reply]

    Debra Askanase Reply:

    Glad you liked the post, Erin. I am still an avid delicious user, though now expanding into Evernote and scoop.it as well. Have you started a stack yet?

    [Reply]

  • Stacks notwithstanding, the removal of RSS subscribing to Delicious search results is, in my book, simply tragic.  Delicious may have been kind of lame as a web site to visit, but it was phenomenal as an engine for information referral, and RSS was the medium that it referred by. I can’t consider the refresh to be improved.  It’s like painting a living room and walling over all of the doors.

    [Reply]

    Debra Askanase Reply:

    Peter, I had no idea the RSS subscribe tags were disabled; that’s such a good point. I often would subscribe to tags when I was researching a topic in the past. What a terrible business decision for delicious!

    I do disagree that I think the stacks might turn out to be another interesting research avenue or information referral engine (love that term). I find the interface much easier on the eye, but it is more akin to a fresh coat of paint.

    What do you prefer for social bookmarking? I still use delicious and I’m using Evernote now as well, along with scoop.it.

    [Reply]

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  • When I saw the new delicious’ stacks, I thought I’ll start seeing links to interesing stacks on blogs and social media profiles. I didn’t see those yet. Do you have any recommendations of interesting stacks about social change, online communities, or more specific social change topics?

    [Reply]

    Debra Askanase Reply:

    Ma’ayan, I certainly thought I’d see more, too. However, it seems that not many people are viewing social media stacks, and most of the stacks related to social media have less than six links. I haven’t heard any “buzz” about stacks in my web streams (though that may not mean anything significant), but what is more significant is that a search for social media stacks comes up with nothing very interesting, no stacks with many bookmarked links, and few stacks with over 100 views. I think that tells the story, thus far. I find myself continuing to bookmark like crazy on delicious, but using scoop.it to follow curated social media topics.

    [Reply]

About

Debra Askanase is an experienced digital engagement strategist, non-profit executive, and community organizer. She works with mission-driven organizations to develop digital strategies and campaigns that engage, create trust, and move stakeholders to action. Debra speaks at conferences worldwide on the intersection of technology, social media, and nonprofit organizations.

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