Wednesday, September 21, 2011

7 Stages of Dealing With Facebook Interface Change

As usual, Facebook has changed its interface just as I was getting used to the last round of changes. Whether this helps or hinders Facebook's long-term success, I'm not going to hazard a guess. After all, people are complaining and venting, but they're still doing it on Facebook, which only boosts the time spent on the evil site that everyone's complaining about. (Facebook says, "Jump," and we say, "How high?")

To help others cope, I thought I'd take a moment to remind everyone of the 7 stages most folks go through when a site such as Facebook redesigns their interface:
  1. Shock. This morning, I logged into Facebook and was like, "What the heck?" I didn't even know how to respond, but that didn't last long...
  2. Denial. My first action was to log off of Facebook and log back in. Obviously, there was some kind of technological hiccup that caused my account to look completely goofy and entirely too busy. But then, I realized that no, this is the new reality. Of course, that brought me to...
  3. Anger. What right does Facebook have to go changing their freaking interface? Don't they respect my visits that are helping with their clicks, engagement and click throughs? Yes, I posted a status update to vent.
  4. Bargaining. Then, I started letting Facebook know that they'd better change their ways back or else I was going to become a Google+ user. Or Tumblr. Or Twitter. Or LinkedIn. Of course, I'm actually already a user of each of these social networks.
  5. Depression. By 11 a.m., it really began to sink in that this is it: the new Facebook. There's no hope of continuing on in a civilized social media society that doesn't include a "ticker" of status updates. Might as well give up on social networking ever again. Sigh.
  6. Acceptance. About an hour ago, I came to terms with the new reality. After all, Facebook is a free service that I'm not obligated to use. They can do what they want, and it doesn't hurt anyone in the grand scheme of things. Maybe life after the Facebook redesign can be productive. In fact...
  7. Championing. In fact, I'm not going to let an opportunity to discuss this new Facebook interface slip through my fingers. I'm going to write a post about it now. There's no reason I can't make the new Facebook work for me, is there?
Not everyone will be able to work through these 7 stages of Facebook interface redesign in a matter of four hours like I was. Some may take a whole week. But believe me, they'll work through these steps (or just abandon Facebook for Google+ or even--gasp--give up on social media completely).

And those who wants to stick around and play social media will need to work through these 7 stages, because they need to be ready for the next round of changes.


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JeannetteLS said...

I went through the six stages, but not the seventh. Facebook is a computer tool, just as blogging is a computer tool. Only they each offer a pleasure I'd not have had without them. I am in touch with people I thought were out of my life for good through Facebook, so I am grateful for that. And Blogging stimulates my writing, my brain, and my art--especially in the reading of other blogs.

But for me, Facebook has the Microsoft philosophy--change for change's sake, and anticipating what I REALLY want to see and making it difficult for me to opt out of THEIR decisions for me. I always have the sense that the intent is to trip me up so that some little bit will suddenly be more public than I know so that an advertiser will be satisfied.

Blogging does not remove my choices for me, though I'm not a fan of Blogspot's new dashboard deal.

It's free. I get that. And I accept that this is what they will do whenever I am feeling comfortable and reasonably in control of my little bitty facebook world.

It is how it is in the world of computer software and program design. Like built-in obsolescence, I guess.

But I won't get to 7 and champion Facebook. Nope. I'll leave it at grudging acceptance.

Until I find something I like more.

Robert Lee Brewer said...

Good points, Jeannette, and I totally agreee.

Except that by championing, I don't mean that you should champion Facebook, the service--but champion your own use of Facebook (that is, unless you find something you like more). Stopping at acceptance is kind of like letting Facebook win, because while you've accepted the new design, you're not using it to your advantage.

JeannetteLS said...

Ah, I see what you mean now by championing. Okay. Step seven works for me, too, now that I get what you mean! Seems as if most of my friends have gotten to that now, as we all share ways to get around the new architecture.