Facebook Faces Its Greatest Foe: Apathy [Opinion]

By Noah J. Nelson (@noahjnelson)

Facebook held another big annoucement event today, this time for their Android make-over they're calling "Facebook Home".

Problem is: does anyone really care?

Every few months Facebook comes up with some new "revolutionary" experience: Timeline, Graph Search, the New Nu Gnu News Feed. By the time we actually get it--I'm still waiting for Graph Search to magically appear for me-- it usually pales in comparison to whatever horrendous changes Zuckerberg and company have made in order to make feeding us, the end users, advertisements easier for their real customers. Those being the companies who actually buy Facebook ads.

I'll grant them one thing on this "Home" concept.

Putting messages front and center in the user experience is smart. I'm not sure if the Path-like "Chatheads" bubbles are the best implementation of this, or that I want messages popping in over every app I use in quite the way the demo video shows. Then again, I'm not likely the demographic for this phone, and there is no "one true way" to do this.

What I do know is that there is an almost palpable lack of trust between the public and Facebook to deliver a good user experience. Sure, the IDEA of Home sounds good, but how long until that third photo swipe on a lock screen reveals an OkCupid ad? Until the second? Until it is just there and we have to click on the ad to unlock the phone?

Absurd? Sure. Plausible? Almost certainly.

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