Facebook Timeline just began public roll out in New Zealand, which means that Canada can’t be too far behind. Having set up the beta version on my own profile, I can say from experience that this is one of the most substantial visual and user experience changes I’ve seen on Facebook. Don’t worry, you aren’t being forced to switch – yet. Although as with any Facebook change, it will probably be forced onto you eventually, so if I were you I’d make the switch now and take advantage of the 7-day preview opportunity.
That’s right, there’s a 7-day preview. When you activate timeline, you will have an opportunity to preview and test it out yourself before any of your friends can see your new profile (if you want it – there is an option to just make it public if you want to). This preview gives you a chance to review those times on Facebook that are a little less buried now, just in case you want to perform a little housekeeping. Those college party photos that people tagged you in back in the early days of Facebook probably don’t look so good out in the professional world. But it also gives you a chance to add life events that Facebook may not have captured, like the day your first child was born. You can even add photos and link them to the relevant year – you’re no longer limited to showing photos based on Facebook chronology.
The Verdict: Still undecided. As much fun as it was to relive those less than flattering photos, I definitely had to clean up my privacy settings to accommodate. I’m not entirely convinced that it’s worth the effort to manually load up photos from my past in order to have a more complete timeline, but I’m interested to see how this goes once it does become more publicly launched. If nothing else, it’s always interesting to see how the creative types will embrace it, and here at Dashboard we’re all about the creative, so I consider it an exciting new social media challenge, and look forward to the day that hopefully timeline will be rolled out to brand pages as well.