Letter to Facebook: have you lost your mind?

Dear Facebook,

I used to be a big fan, but my love affair is waning very fast. I sheepishly admit that in the early days, I may have even called you 'FaceHook' on occasion. But now, things have changed fast, and I worry you've lost your mind. And here's why:

1. You aren't Twitter. Some say you are trying to Tweet-ify your homepage and jump on the microblogging bandwagon. Note: that's what your newsfeed, which you've unceremoniously killed, used to achieve. This new mishmash of updates/wall conversations/posts is ugly and disorganised. I long for the old newsfeed.

2. There is already a Twitter, and it's doing just fine thanks, given its growth statistics.

3. You used to be an experience site where one could store little pieces of life and show them around to ones' friends. Now, I can't even find pictures, groups, others' profiles or the other little things that made my experience better. Now, you just seem to be a weird cross between an RSS reader, microblogging and mess.

4. "New Facebook" amplifies your worst feature - the one your biggest fans hate - applications that do nonsense things like vampire fighting that annoy and take up space on one's computer.

And here's why I fear losing your mind could result in your death:

1. I no longer recommend that people in my mom & dad's generation will 'get you' and benefit from joining. My mom would have been just about OK on the old Facebook, but the new one? She won't be able to make heads or tails of it. She shops online, so I believe her computer skills are average or above average for the 60-70 years segment. Wasn't that your biggest growth segment previously? You've screwed that one up royally.

2. I will no longer put my pictures on your site and chose Flikr from now on. Once people stop posting their photo albums, you're not even living up to your name "Facebook" anymore.

3. Your users revolted about the new T&C's to the point where you had to retract them. You planted the seed of doubt in users' minds that you are about to infringe on their rights and privacy (bringing me to my next point....)

4. You have apparently been emailing people's non-member friends that they recommend they join. (This happened to me, despite me a. not saying that was OK with me and b. not even wanting the recommendation passed on.) If you carry on infringing on people's online rights, your users will desert you faster than Friendster.

Please, Mark Zuckerberg, I implore you to rethink this strategy. It ain't working, and 94% of your userbase agrees, from the recent vote. If you wanted to create a new service, you should have kept the happy Facebook bubble, named the new thing something else and given users the choice to upgrade, have both, or stay happily where they were.


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