Facebook users will be forced into using Timeline, its new profile page, which allows members to tell the story of their life on a single page, in less than a week’s time.
Until now, the change to the new-look Facebook, has been voluntary. But Facebook’s 800 million users around the world no longer have a choice as Timeline has been made compulsory starting from August 8. Users who have yet to switch to the new look are being served a preview of their redesigned profile before it goes live to their friends on in six days time.
From the point when a user clicks ‘get Timeline’, they have seven days to play around with the new profile. However, the new look is now compulsory for all users.
First announced by Mark Zuckerberg, Facebook’s founder and chief executive at f8, company’s annual developers’ conference in San Francisco last September, Timeline allows users a much more visually impactful profile and the ability to share the story of their whole lives.
Zuckerberg explained the thinking behind Timeline at the conference, saying: “Millions of people curate stories of their lives on Facebook every day and have no way to share them once they fall off your profile page…we have been working on ‘timeline’ all year…it’s the story of your life and completely new way to express yourself.
“It has three pieces: all your stories, your apps and a new way to express who you are.”
He said that wanted people to be able to share “their entire lives” on Facebook and have “total control” over how their content appeared online. Using his own profile to demonstrate the new timeline, Zuckerberg showed photos of himself as a baby which he has inserted into the new profile page which is organized by years.
However, users across the site were up in arms about the forced change, which was first mooted earlier this year and is quite a dramatically different way each member displays their personal information.
One user wrote: “I’m sorry but this is rubbish. I’m surprised Facebook hasn’t included a compulsory DNA profile section (default to public obviously).”
Web users generally do not welcome the redesign of sites and digital services they use every day. Recently when the BBC radically redesigned its home page, the corporation received hundreds of complaints.
However, it remains to be seen how forcing Facebook users into such a radical change of their most personal page on the site, will fare with the majority of members.