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The New Facebook Part 1: Read. Watch. Listen.

From sarcastic memes to exciting rumors, the Internet is still buzzing about Facebook’s f8 Conference in San Francisco. The event’s official motto of “Read. Watch. Listen.” suggested that Mark Zuckerberg would announce changes leading to greater news, video and music integration within the social network.

Rumors

Rumors of the new Facebook changes were based on everything from leaked information (iPad app and music feature) to hearsay (Hulu integration).

One rumor that seemed likely, especially because of the event’s motto, was the appearance of new recommendation buttons, including “Listened”, “Watched” and “Read.” These buttons would not only improve Facebook’s ad targeting, but also enhance social interactions and create a more personalized user experience.

Reaching for the same “Read” button goal, Wired.com has already published a first look at the Washington Post’s new Facebook app, called Social Reader, which allows users to interact with online news content.

Reactions

Facebook has been rolling out small changes for the past two weeks leading up to the f8 Conference. The subscribe button appeared on news feeds last week, and a couple of days ago the presentation and prominence of Facebook photos improved.

How have the changes been received? According to a Mashable poll, they have not been received terribly well. In response to the question, “What do you think of Facebook’s revamped new feed?,” only 12.65 percent of users responded that they “love” it.

However, if we’ve learned anything from the past, it’s that it takes time for users to warm up to Facebook changes. Even if Zuckerberg’s f8 announcements weren’t well received on Thursday, I have a sneaking suspicion that over time we’ll learn to love the new Facebook.

Watch f8 replays here, and check back later this week for our response to the “new and improved” Facebook.

Heath Beckett

Heath Beckett is Ashe Avenue's Lead Front-end Developer. @heathclifff

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