On the Ground: Elis call new Facebook ‘messy,’ ‘flustering’

“Susie is this new facebook blows,” Facebook Mini Feeds across campus read this week. Or: “Dan joined the group 1,000,000 strong against the new facebook.”

The social-networking Web site Facebook has switched all its users to a new layout since the end of last week — and some Elis are having a hard time letting go.

“I don’t like the fact that I have to change,” said Jenny Goff ’12, who articulated a common sentiment among the students hanging out on Old Campus on Monday afternoon.

The new Facebook performs all the same functions as its predecessor, but users’ profiles — previously single Web pages — have been divided into three separate tabs: Wall, Info and Photos. The new format, Jules Terrien ’12 said, draws more attention to a person’s wall and what his friends have been writing on it.

“I preferred getting the whole chunk of a person’s personal info on the first page,” Terrien said. “Now it takes a few more clicks to see things like what groups someone is in.”

“A few clicks” may not seem like the end of the world, but since many college students check Facebook between classes — or between sentences as they write papers — speed and usability are of paramount importance to many Elis.

Some students had more specific complaints about the new Facebook.

Matt Schmidt ’12 said he is concerned that he may have lost access to all of the “Bumper Stickers” that friends posted on his profile page. On the new Facebook, only the most recent bumper sticker is visible on a user’s profile.

Perhaps the most obvious change is the combination of the Mini Feed and Wall applications. Now profiles show when a user has written a note, been tagged in a picture or RSVP’d to events, all in chronological order. Keeping tabs on friends, enemies and everyone in between — “Facebook stalking,” as many Yalies call it — has never been easier.

The greater convenience aside, though, many are uncomfortable with the combination of various elements of the old Facebook. Raffi Friedman ’12 said she finds the excess of information “overwhelming.”

“It’s confusing, messy, and it makes me very flustered,” Gaby Jen ’12 added. “It’s annoying.”

But Simon Chaffetz ’12 said he thinks the new look is an improvement.

“You don’t only see friends who are in a person’s principle network. You see all of their friends,” he said. “Also, I prefer that they now have photos that you uploaded yourself and photos of you uploaded by others in the same place.”

And for C.J. Uy ’12, all the whining about the new Facebook is much ado about nothing.

“People are only complaining because it’s new and different,” he said. “We all had the same reaction to the Mini Feed when that was introduced.”

Groups similar to those protesting the new Facebook, Uy said, popped up when the Mini Feed appeared several months ago — and those groups did nothing to persuade Facebook creator Mark Zuckerberg to eliminate the Mini Feed.

“They aren’t going to change it back because 1,000,000 kids join something saying they don’t like it,” he said.

Emma Freeman ’10 described the sinking feeling in her stomach when she realized she could no longer go back to the old version.

“My roommate and I were both online and it changed on us at exactly the same second,” she said. “We freaked out.”

Comments

  • Ryan D

    Yeah the new facebook is gross. I see no advantages. The old one was beautiful and tastefully designed. Now I feel like I'm using a bad hybrid between MySpace and Microsoft Office 2007. Wtf.

  • graphic designer

    from a graphic design standpoint, the new site is awful. i can't stand to look at it anymore.

  • JE 10

    I find it delightfully amusing that so many die-hard Obama supporters hate any kind of CHANGE when it involves the way that their favorite social networking website is displayed on their screen.

  • Anonymous

    I don't understand what benefit Facebook gets out of the switch. Like seriously they just burned a lot of goodwill, and I can't see how it would help the bring in more ad money or anything.

    whatever the reason, i hate the new facebook and use it a lot less now. maybe thats the only good thing that came out of the switch.

  • JE 10

    Also, I feel bad for Ms. Caplan-Bricker for being assigned this ridiculous subject.

    The title almost lapses into self-parody

  • Not a kid

    I think it is incredible that people would think that the over 1.8 million people who dislike the changes are just 'kids' They're not kids, they are people from all walks of life. I protested and joined the group against Facebook's changes and I am a married adult. The changes are inconvenient and annoying to busy working people too, not only to 'kids'…and, byt the way, please define kids. University and young adult aged? They're certainly not kids. The Facebook designers should take the time to read the concerns.

  • Already Over It

    I can't believe how much hype and carry-on there's been about this change!
    If you don't like it, it's quite simple really - deactivate your account, it's not that hard to do.
    I'm not a HUGE fan of the new facebook - though I do like the way things have been organised and categorised, it used to take me AGES to find some of my friends walls, now it's there. If I want to look at their applications, I can, if I don't, I don't have to.
    It's really not that bad. And at the end of the day, chances of Mark Zuckerberg having Facebook changed back to the old version, are less than slim to none.

  • Lee

    I don't like the new layout, I agree that it's a mess!!! Why the change??? if it ain't broke, don't fix it!

  • Big Brother Mark Is Watching You

    Yo, "Already Over It," deactivating your account is actually pretty hard to do:

    http://www.nytimes.com/2008/02/11/technology/11facebook.html?scp=1&sq=Facebook%20remove&st=cse

  • Jacky

    2% of users don't like it. 30 million switched before it was mandatory, without complaint.

    I'm astounded that someone who is too stupid to work a basic social networking site is in school. Sad…

  • Already Over It

    In reply to "Big Brother Mark Is Watching You"

    Deactivating your account is simple, go into your account settings, and hit deactivate.
    The removing of your account entirely is another story.
    What I'm trying to get across is that you don't HAVE to use Facebook if you don't want to. There are plenty of people who love the new Facebook and would hate to change back to the old Facebook. Change is a part of life, sometimes for the good, sometimes for the bad, either way, the new Facebook haters, really have to suck it up.