Why I don’t really HATE Facebook’s redesign

Another day, another Facebook redesign, and cries of “I hate it!” and “Facebook, you totally wrecked my whole, like, you know, LIFE,” are flooding the web. 

Mostly on Facebook itself – which now seems to include the entire web. But what makes this redesign so different from other redesigns? Pretty much nothing. In fact, it’s not even half as bad as I expected.

Yes, the ticker is ugly, but you can hide it. Yes, that little blue corner on posts Facebook patronizingly informs us we “might find interesting” is unnecessary and confusing, and yes, we know, we hate, hate, hate, hate change. For about two weeks. Until we get over it and prepare ourselves to hate the next change which will change the thing we hated in the first place. And so the cycle of Facebook redesign hatred continues.

So, it’s true that it took me a minute or five to rediscover how to actually post a status update (I may or may not have accidentally typed my first attempt into the search box, *cough*). And it’s also true that clicking to load new stories is an exact copy of what I hate most about the Twitter web page, but the bigger photos in the newsfeed are pretty sweet. And thinking greenly, cutting back on auto-updating is probably sparing a heck load of server load, so Facebook is actually doing its bit against global warming. Or something. Maybe. Probably not.

The lists concepts is obviously a direct rip off from G+’s circles concept, but to be fair, if anything needed ripping off, it was that, so fair play to Facebook for stealing at least one idea of value. I quite like being able to group my friends into specific lists and view their newsfeeds separately, it’s actually kind of neat, give it a go and I reckon you’ll enjoy it. At least enough to go ape sh*t when Facebook takes it away from you in the next redesign.

It’s also nice that Facebook has finally realized there is just no way in hell anyone would ever be able to keep up with its privacy (or lack of privacy) settings, and has instead added a little box at the top of your profile where you can check at any given moment how your various “friends” see your page. Can mum see my drunken photos from last night? No, no she cannot…yay! Can my boss see the status where I called him an utter douchesack? Why, yes he can, bollocks, I’d better either delete that or figure out how to block him. See? All very simple now. Thanks to the hateful, but perhaps not so hateful redesign.

Other than that, what’s changed? Precious little by the looks of things, though tomorrow’s revelations at F8 may have more emotionally difficult changes in store for Facebook’s poor, huddled masses.

I mean, seriously, you pay for a page… oh, wait, no… you get a free page on a social network back in 2005 and you expect it to not bloody change EVER. Is that too much to ask, Facebook? Oh, it is? Well, ok, fair enough… Now if you don’t mind, I’m off to try and figure out how to share this article to somewhere other than the search box.