57 Takes on Facebook Places: Analyzed, Criticized, Evangelized

Posted in Social Media

By now, you’ve probably caught wind of this thing called “Facebook Places.” In fact, unless your entire last week was consumed by SES San Francisco or Affiliate Summit you may have read, with bated breath,  live blog coverage from Facebook HQ in Palo Alto, CA. It was there CEO Mark Zuckerberg addressed a crowded room that, according to Greg Sterling, resembled “a wedding or luau [rather] than a press conference.” Right. That’s creepy-ominous enough.

If by some chance you’re living under a rock and have not heard of Facebook Places, here’s a 140 character summary: Facebook Places allows users to share their location & the location of their friends by “checking in” at places via an iPhone app. To paraphrase general feedback from social circles: “So… basically, it’s just like Foursquare.” Maybe so. Maybe no. Regardless, the unveiling of this possibly game-changing platform certainly warrants a closer look.

In an effort to help provide just that, we compiled a list of 57 recently-published posts about Facebook Places– from launch coverage to field guides, privacy warnings to tactics on how biz owners & marketers can capitalize on the functionality.  Read on for the complete link roundup.

Facebook Pages Genesis: The Making Of & Launch

What The Heck Is Facebook Places & How Do You Use It?

Facebook Places Features & Functions

Privacy Concerns & How To Opt Out

Tips For Businesses, Marketers & Developers

iPhone-Specific

Facebook vs. The World [Wide Web]

Facebook Places: Analyzed, Criticized & Evangelized

Facebook Places: Lovers, Haters & the Utterly Indifferent
We decided to poll Twitter users to get a better understanding of how Facebook Places affects them, if at all…





What are your thoughts on Facebook Places?

  • Justin Hornung

    Many thanks for the resource hub, Lauren. As you so kindly reposted above, my feelings on the advent of this new “service” fall (four)squarely into the negative. Much as it irks me, though, there’s a very good chance I’ll wind up using it as a business tool. Which, of course, leads back to the age-old conundrum of the compromises we make when our personal mores clash with the needs and opportunities of our professional lives. My final thought, which really doesn’t merit it’s own comment but I can’t just leave that “on” dangling there like an overripe and malformed doomberry, was this: On a separate note, I find it mildly amusing that facebook’s blog was titled “Who, what, when…now where” when it’s clear they never intend to answer our repeated cries of “why?”

  • Lauren Litwinka

    @Justin – thank you for taking the time to comment, very glad you found this post useful. Props on the 4sq puns. Your separate note is perfectly spot-on… “why?” seems to be a question Zuckerberg perpetually dodges with the grace of a principal ballerina. I don’t know if we’ll ever fully understand the motivation behind Facebook’s tactics and platform expansion… perhaps the answer lies within the inner lining of a certain navy blue sweatshirt…

  • Gini Dietrich

    Holy crap! I can’t believe there are this many resources in less than a week after launching. Bookmarking now so I can point clients here when they have questions. Thanks!!

    Also, I’m glad the spam protection sum isn’t very hard. I can mange 10+7.

  • Lauren Litwinka

    @Gini – Insane, right? Everyone was quick to jump on board, at least as far as covering the launch went. Glad you found this post resourceful :)

  • Zane Aveton

    Thx for including me and WOW – thx for compiling such a comprehensive list on Facesquare….haha! *Just kidding Zuckerberg. I know it’s called Facebook SquarePlaces.

    thx again!
    @Zaneology

  • Melissa DelGaudio

    I know that it’s cool to hate Facebook; they’re the big bully on the blog … I get it. And Places isn’t FUN; it has none of the gaming aspect that makes people enjoy FourSquare.

    But the thing is that Facebook knows *exactly* what it’s doing. Their entre into location services, I’m sure, goes far beyond what people have seen since Places’ launch. If you look at it from the perspective of business owners, it’s a game-changer. The potential audience to which businesses can market as a result of the service is enormous.

    The privacy issues are problematic, but beyond that, Facebook Places has HUGE potential.

  • Lauren Litwinka

    @Zane – Glad you dug the post! Facebook Squareplaces… is that the social networking sequel to everyone’s favorite underwater pineapple-dwelling sponge?

    @Melissa – I’m not on 4sq or Places, but now I can understand why 4sq’s CEO called Places “boring.” It’s about more than geo-tagging, it’s about interaction (isn’t all purposeful social networking about just that?). And yes, *sigh* you’re right – FB does know exactly what it’s doing. They launch this service knowing full well that since geo-tagging is totally hot (thanks to 4sq & co.) most members will thoughtlessly opt-in and happily-casually use the service (or in the very least, forget to opt-out)… et voilà, Facebook knows that much more about who you are and where you are. Places has huge potential, but it seems FB will be the one who ultimately benefits.

  • Melissa DelGaudio

    It’s interesting … most people, I think, were blissfully unaware of FourSquare until Places launched. To the general populace, it might’ve been something they’d once heard of, but I think this is why 4SQ had such a surge of people signing up the day after the Places launch.

    I think FB will benefit, sure, but why shouldn’t they? They’ve built a platform that’s so useful to people that even those who claim to hate it can’t stay away. They *should* be making money. And for the businesses who claim their pages, etc? It’ll be a marketing boon.

    An interesting thing that I noted just after the Places launch. I went to a ballgame about three days later and checked in on both 4SQ *and* Places. There were 88 people checked in on 4SQ and 65 checked in on Places. That’s pretty huge, considering the thing had just been announced. VERY interested to see how businesses take advantage.

  • Lauren Litwinka

    @Melissa – “They’ve built a platform that’s so useful to people that even those who claim to hate it can’t stay away.”< -- Man, I am so totally one of those people. Regarding that baseball game, that *is* a very surprising, and I suppose, encouraging ratio of 4sqers & Places...ers.

    I agree with the potential FB has for social-savvy businesses... however, won't the existence of both pages and places no doubt splinter overall activity of the community? (Ex: http://www.facebook.com/rogersmithhotel vs.
    http://bit.ly/a26Ggi) – the concept just seems a little redundant to me. But perhaps I just need to do some more investigating and dare I say… participation…

  • Mike Dickman

    Lauren,
    Great compilation of information about Places, which seems to be a bit late in the location-based application front from a company which dominates the ‘conversation’ front. Although, FB was not the first ‘social’ web app and quickly overtook the world. That being said, since FB ALLOWS Foursquare users to Connect to their profiles, why would FS user abandon their FS and jump to Places. PLUS, ANY smartphone user can use Foursquare, while not every smartphone user can use Places. And, as a business trying to set up your Facebook Places Page, the number of hoops to jump through are more than that of a Ringling Brothers Circus act.
    I’m sticking with FS (until I get a Droid!).