Facebook's New Layout Important to Newspapers

Thursday, September 22, 2011

A month ago I would have scoffed at the idea. There was no way that Facebook would have any importance to a newspaper, apart from their need to have a Facebook page for fans to follow. With the new changes to Facebook, newspapers should start paying attention.

Facebook has over 800 million users and has posted a day with over 500 million members logging in. It is safe to say that a lot of people's opinions are able to be expressed via Facebook. This is why the reaction to the new layout should be alarming to newspapers everywhere.

According to this article, Facebook claims it is trying to become "your own personal newspaper". Their news feed section is something taken directly from many newspaper websites. There is also a real-time ticker off to the side that keeps you up-to-date on who is doing what all the time.

And the overall consensus seems to be dislike.

If the Facebook members have such a strong reaction against the new format, what does that mean for the newspapers? It means that there is a possibility that a large number of potential readers would not like navigating their website. It means that they might be losing readers because of their layout.

Or maybe there is no correlation at all. What are your thoughts? Does the initial reaction over Facebook mean that newspapers should look into revamping their format? If so, how could they do it better?

Photo via Creative Commons.


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