The Facebook Timeline in the New York Times

December 15, 2011 | Leave a comment

Facebook Timeline: lost a loved one?I’m quoted in the New York Times article about the global release of the Facebook Timeline:

“We’ve all been dropping status updates and photos into a void,” said Ben Werdmuller, the chief technology officer at Latakoo, a video service. “We knew we were sharing this much, of course, but it’s weird to realize they’ve been keeping this information and can serve it up for anyone to see.”

Mr. Werdmuller, who lives in Berkeley, Calif., said that the experience of browsing through his social history on Facebook was emotionally evocative – not unlike unearthing an old yearbook or shoebox filled with photographs and letters.

Regular readers will know that my opinion goes beyond it being “weird”. Here’s how I described it back in September:

Except now, when someone clicks through from anywhere on the web that uses Facebook Connect to see your profile, they’ll really see you: your life in context. It’s a contextual identity; something you won’t get from a real name, a passport, an ID card, or even a DNA profile. Whereas previously profiles were a collection of hand-picked pieces of information coupled with some things you’d shared recently, now you’ll see wedding photos, pictures of drunken nights on the town four years ago, and perhaps a status update you made when you were hurt and upset after something you’ve long forgotten that happened in 2006 – mixed up with more professional status updates and links, of course.

You can read my entire Facebook Timeline post over here, and here’s today’s New York Times article.