When Facebook offered a glimpse at its new Timeline user interface back in September of 2011 during its fourth annual F8 Convention, many attendees were struck with awe. Developers and entrepreneurs at the conference welcomed the radical makeover, and tech journalists raved about it in the days to come. The official launch of Timeline for all Facebook users began in earnest just before the end of 2011, and about a month later the prominent online social network warn its members that Timeline would be the new de facto layout and user interface.
The initial enthusiasm surrounding Timeline last year began to fade in opinion polls as soon as Facebook announced that the change was non-negotiable. Early adopters weren’t fazed by the seemingly stern notice on January 24th advising members that once the mandatory Timeline is activated as part of their profile, they will have seven days to preview it. It is within this window that members will be able to add, hide or modify information and media before anyone else visits their profile and sees it.
Once the mandatory announcement was made, the original love given to Timeline quickly began to fade among the 800 million Facebook members. Tech media sites that conducted online polls and surveys to gauge the sentiment just a week after the announcement found that only about half of those surveyed had adopted Timeline, most weren’t thrilled with it and in fact wished that it remained optional. Some members cited privacy concerns, while others simply did not enjoy the way old information is organized and displayed by Timeline.
As Facebook gets ready for its debut on Wall Street, the company is moving forward with Timeline as its new user interface. For those of you who feel uncomfortable with this paradigm change, there is solace to be found in the following ten tips that help users manage how their profile and information will appear to the rest of the world:
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If you are concerned about strangers and other people outside your social network looking into our Timeline, you should click on the “Limit Audience for Old Posts” option located in the privacy settings page and follow the steps to manage and limit the visibility of past posts.
Subscribers Instead of Friends:
You don’t have to be Facebook friends with everyone, and you don’t need to be buried underneath a deluge of friend requests. You can now allow people to subscribe to your activity feed and you can determine just how much they can see on the subscriber tab of Timeline settings.
Timeline organizes your information in a way that’s intuitive and efficient, meaning that it’s now easier than ever for someone to dig into your past and find embarrassing or incriminating information to share across different social media platforms. You can prevent this from happening by simply clicking on the pencil icon that appears next to each Timeline item and hide it.
Highlight Your Photos:
In an era when even cheap cell phones have high resolution cameras and free photo editing applications are easy to obtain, it is almost inexcusable to have a poor picture as the main Timeline photo. If you can’t spend too much time with your photos, check out the different Facebook apps available for Timeline customization.
The Timeline world map does not only show where you are at any given time, it also lets you tag photos geographically in retrospect. If you have pictures of different places you have visited over the years, Timeline allows you to organize them chronologically on the map.
Isolate Your Timeline:
This is by far the most stringent privacy feature of Timeline. It is found within the privacy settings and it allows members to selectively block their profiles by simply entering the names specific members.
Control Your Activity Log:
Since Timeline makes it easy for the world to know what you are up to at any given time, it is important to control the items that can be displayed and shared across the Timelines of your friends. The new activity log options allows you to label items that are spam, remove them entirely, or even disassociating yourself from any discussions, photos, posts, or videos in which you have been tagged.
New Full Size Video Option:
Videos can be highlighted in the new Timeline whether they have been uploaded or shared by others; all it takes is a simple click of the star that appears next to video to bring up the resizing options. Once the size of the video has been adjusted, it will remain that way until changed again. This is a great option for brick-and-mortar businesses that wish to play up their goods, services or their storefront.
Change Cover Photos Anytime:
If you are a person on the go for reasons of travel or leisure, it is always a great idea to visually update your status with a photo. The new Timeline allows you to easily change your photo from a mobile device by loading the Facebook app and clicking on the cover photo icon. This will in turn activate your device’s camera and allow you to take the desired cover photo for immediate upload.
The new Timeline is very keen on sharing and displaying real-time feeds anywhere you may be within the site. The ticker on the upper right and the chat window on the lower right form a sidebar that can be distracting, but it can be easily hidden by clicking the button located near the bottom right corner of the web page.
Via Site Reference