If you logged onto Facebook today, you probably noticed something a little different with Facebook pages. If you didn’t look, let me show you the difference:
Instead of giving the user the option to “Become a fan” of a page (such as the page as yours truly, Hillary DePiano) now you have the option to “Like” me instead.
Facebook’s stated logic for the change was that people hit the like button much more often than they fan something so they got rid of the fanning. I’m not 100% sure that logic is sound.
Off the bat, the one thing I like about this is that I always felt weird asking people to “become my fan.” It always felt like I was saying, “Worship me!” because the word fan has so many more connotations. So I feel much more comfortable asking you to just “Like” me on Facebook which just sounds like less of a commitment. You may not feel like you are my fan but you do like me or you wouldn’t be reading this blog so it seems like it could result in more people following your page.
However, I can see why many people are upset about this. Let me quote a Twitter friend, Jen Lindsay, who sums it up pretty well:
not so much a fan of the new “like” button. A “fan” really cares about something, someone who “likes” can go either way. –@jelindsay
My cousin (14 years old) is a serial “fan”-er. She easily fans about 20 things a day, I’m not exaggerating or joking. She fans whatever she thinks is funny, so true, etc. To me, the way she wantonly fans things, you’d think that the “Like” feature would fit well with her needs but instead, it irritated her. Being a fan of something, she protested when we discussed this back before it was implemented, is very different than liking something. When you like something, you just like one thing. Whereas if you are a fan of something, you like everything about it.
That is my attempt to sum up the opinion of a teenage to show the other side. I for one am not sure that I see it the same way but, again, I don’t use the fan feature as often as she does so I feel like she may be the authority here. I’m looking at this more from the perspective of a Facebook Page owner whereas she is looking at it more as a Facebook user.
But the marketer/business owner in me is curious in a different way. Does this mean that if I tweet out a link to my Facebook page and that you like a single post I put out, you now “like” my whole page. While this would definitely get my page more followers quickly, this seems like one of those sneaky tactics like adding me to your mailing list without asking me.
Might the result be that more people block your updates because they are annoyed that they are seeing them, not realizing the cause?
Might people become more reluctant to “like” things in the future?
Or is this like all Facebook changes where people complain for a day and are used to it in less than a week?
I can really see both sides of the debate. What do you think?