free html hit counter Facebook Shows "What's On Its Mind" - Twitter - John Battelle's Search Blog

Facebook Shows "What's On Its Mind" – Twitter

By - March 05, 2009


An AP story today about changes coming to the Facebook service is quite interesting:

Facebook: Taking a cue from Twitter in sharing?

The popular online hangout Facebook is revamping its home page and plans other changes so its millions of users can more easily choose the types of information they see.

Perhaps taking a cue from Twitter, the rising service for letting people express themselves in 140 characters or less and keep up with what celebrities have to say, Facebook said Wednesday it will let users follow public figures like President Barack Obama and swimmer Michael Phelps, bands like U2 and even institutions like The New York Times….

….Beginning next Wednesday, Facebook will also launch a redesigned home page that lets users receive continuous updates from their friends instead of every 10 or 15 minutes….

…Facebook will also tweak its central feature, the status update, which now invites people to broadcast to their friends a response to “What are you doing right now?”….Facebook’s new question, “What’s on your mind?,” may encourage people to dig deeper into their subconscious and post more entertaining updates

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OK. So here’s how it seems to be shaping up.

Microsoft, still the biggest company in the space, is obsessed with Google. Google is obsessed with Facebook. Facebook is obsessed with Twitter.

So what is Twitter obsessed with?!

At this point, my guess is – Twitter. Or rather, just building the company, hiring the right folks, keeping the service up, and fighting back all the inbound requests for a piece of their mojo. Twitter is tiny compared to Facebook, which is tiny compared to Google, which is small compared to Microsoft. Oh, if only I had some Illustrator skills, I’d make me quite a graphic…

(Update, this image sort of does it for me, if you like it, buy the postcard on Zazzle.)

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10 thoughts on “Facebook Shows "What's On Its Mind" – Twitter

  1. Jan Simmonds says:

    The smart move would be to obsess itself with Microsoft and square the circle…

  2. If Microsoft wants to compete they should just buy Facebook now while it’s relatively inexpensive. Meanwhile Twitter should sell to Google now before a site like Facebook makes them absolute.

  3. nmw says:

    Twitter should be obsessed with the Wisdom of the Language ( ).

    Among the 4 companies you mention (Microsoft, Google, Facebook, Twitter), the only one paying a significant amount of attention to the Wisdom of the Language is Google: The Chrome browser is designed to track all of the websites that people type into the browsers URL bar (and knowing Google’s huge interest in making tons of money from advertising it probably won’t be long before Google starts pushing ads into Chome’s URL / Location / Navigation bar).

  4. Some may have come from Twitter, but some is also obvious. What Twitter and Facebook both need is a way for me to see posts that people think are good (by vote, which is what the Facebook status “Like” function is probably for) and skip the boring ones if I don’t have time.

    Pat O’Malley

  5. John M. says:

    What ought to be on Twitter’s mind is ‘real people’.

    Facebook is going to end up being a much better platform for real time search because the data is going to be coming from real people.

  6. TrackerMo says:

    Twitter is the flavor of the week… the real question is, what will Google be looking at next week?

  7. Bertil Hatt says:

    Twitter proved certain elements are important: thoughts are dime a dozen to (interesting) actions, and that technology allowed faster updates; they also went into mobile. I’m surprised that people criticise Facebook for taking clues. I doubt they’ll imitate other essential features, like the openness and the simplicity of the service — so differentiation doesn’t seem too much of an issue. But you can’t blame Facebook for trying: 200 millions for what was a disfunctionnal services weeks ago that they not copied but inspired, two-way applications; they did their due-diligence so far.

  8. Twitter is, as far as I see it, more informal than Facebook.

    It’s easy to get a lot of followers on Twitter and this is increasing the number of post and interactions with other people. Twitter could therefore show to be much better suited for marketing, as the viral effects are much stronger.

  9. ZuDfunck says:

    Help me not to see Twitter as the death knell to Blogging!

  10. beneish says:

    This will definitely be very useful for me when I get a chance to start my blog.
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