Wednesday, December 28, 2011

Facebook Timeline Set To Affect NASCAR

It's always controversial when Facebook rolls out another redesign of the pages that many of us use for both personal and professional conversations and information. That is Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg above in the middle of doing media interviews for the new Facebook format called Timeline.

"Timeline is Facebook’s most radical profile makeover yet," says the Harvard Independent. Timeline has been called a visual scrapbook, an online filing cabinet and even a life tracker. What it certainly will be is controversial.

NASCAR has 2.4 million friends, Dale Earnhardt Jr. has 1.2 million and Jimmie Johnson just over a half million. It's fair to say that many NASCAR fans get their information from and interact with drivers, racetracks and sponsors on Facebook.

Click here for the official Facebook page explaining Timeline. Todd Wasserman for reports that Facebook is concentrating on changing the individual pages first and has yet to release a Timeline date for brands, fan pages and the other commercial aspects of the service.

Despite not being able to use the new format yet, brands like Mountain Dew are already in the mix. The company is supplying free page elements for the new Timeline format on its current Facebook page. Mountain Dew has over 6 million Facebook friends.

You can see in the demo that once Timeline is across the board, live apps can be placed right on the page. The repercussions for services like SiriusXM, MRN and others seeking to expand their NASCAR reach online will be significant.

This will also give a big boost to NASCAR's own brand marketing folks who will be charged with developing easy to use apps for things like timing and scoring, news and results. NASCAR can be put right on anyone's page.

Facebook is fully mobile and the Timeline app will also appear on Android and iPhones. The entire thing is completely portable as long as technology allows it to be. Facebook will see to that.

The reach of this service is amazing. NASCAR has yet to scratch the surface of Facebook and continues to be light years behind in modern social media applications. One big reason for this is the continuing roadblock of having Turner Sports controlling the online NASCAR content across the board.

Next season should be a transition year as the Sports Business Journal reported last week that NASCAR is actively negotiating to buy back its digital rights and should be fully in charge of all online content, applications and streaming for 2013.

If you have switched your Facebook page to the new Timeline format, we would love to hear some feedback from you. It seems that this change is almost entirely geared toward individuals. What happens to racetracks, sponsors and teams when the other pages move to this format is going to be fascinating.

We welcome your comments on this topic. To add your opinion, just click on the comments button below. Thank you for taking the time to stop by The Daly Planet.


HEATHER said...

I hate the new timeline. If you are a game player-i.e. Mafia Wars, Farmville, etc. your posts for the game will be hidden unless you manually go onto your activity log and mark it as a featured post. But there are some neat features you can do to your individual page such a make a photo banner.

Anonymous said...

To me it seems as if you're trying to be another MySpace.....I dont dowmload videos and pictures....I know alot of people post way to much about themselves but what about people who don't ....You are going to chase us out....

Charlie said...

I use Facebook but only when I have to. I signed up for it a few years ago and now read things my family relations post. If not for them I would stop using Facebook.
I don't have the timeline thing yet but it maybe there but I have to click something and don't know how to do it.
Facebook use to be more about the person, now it is about this company and that company and "Like" Me.
I found out if you go to a company and "Like" them you have given them all your personal information you have entered on your Facebook page.
That means that company knows what web pages you go to, who your friends are and knows every step you make on the internet if you stay logged into Facebook while you are still on the computer. Nice, eh.
I liked the way Facebook was before and when new changes have been added you are switched to the new change without even being asked. I know you can switch back on some new updates but you have to go to an option box and click this and not click that.
Just to many moving parts for me anymore.
Facebook has gone from a personal chat page to a big time ad campaign for companies who can also get all kinds of information about the people that "Like" them.

Daniel Vining said...

I was literally one of the first Facebook users to get Timeline... some four or five months ago. I like it. It's really interesting for personal pages, however, I'm curious to learn how branded pages will come out. I can't see Speed 51 or The Speedzine needing a life tracker... they need news, pumped out as it happens, and easy to read.

Sally said...

Since I'm not one of those people who use any of the 'social media', this has no effect on me. To me, this is just one more way to have personal information available to those who have no business having it.

GinaV24 said...

I have a FB page, but have not switched to timeline. For myself, I am not interested in "sharing" my entire life with the world.

veri word is "whanker".

Michael Stoffel said...

Any chance we have a choice? My daughters page has gone timeline, and looks like a mess.

Daly Planet Editor said...

Nope! That is the bottom line. Many of us use Facebook for news, opinion and discussion. Scrapbook style formatting makes no sense.

NASCAR teams, series and sponsors have heavy-duty commercial and product focused Facebook sites.

The new two column scrapbook themed format is really not workable for those purposes.

This one is going to get interesting.


The Mad Man said...

I'll stick with the old format for as long as possible. The new one sucks as far as I'm conerned. Tried to navigate a friends page with the new format and it was a pain in the neck.

Interesting that NASCAR has 1.4 million followers on Facebook and WWE has over 43 million. The motorized version versus the in-ring version. I'd say the WWE is using the social media outlets more effectively than what NASCAR is.

Anonymous said...

The nice banner picture at the top is really nice, after that it has lots in common (as anon 9:04 said) with what killed MySpace versus Facebook (it's a mess)

Facebook is like a lot of IT companies that is still struggling with what to do with it's success (and how to monetize it)

Shoving things down peoples throats will only lose and alienate users, so maybe this will be facebooks attempt to make "Commercial" user accounts be $$$$ otherwise they will be stuck with a Timeline layout. I know it's cynical, but they're a monstrous business and need $$$ from somewhere...their advertising model is a joke.

Sue Rarick said...

As was mentioned earlier Facebook is taking a decidedly wrong turn towards MySpace. How long before all sorts of groups and companies start asking to be your friend. And pages become an unreadable mess like so many did on MySpace.

Remember it didn't take long for MySpace to all but die. It wouldn't take much longer for Facebook to follow along the same path.

Sophia said...

I wasn't gonna chime in on this. I've been reading this blog and sometimes use FB under alias.

I detest the Timeline and it does look like Myspace

Why is this being forced on folks?

I wish more would use Google+ but it's a huge learning curve. To learn G+ I am suffering SM burn out and stick with Twitter 90% of the time. I was an early adopter to Twitter & blogs years ago.FB I went into kicking & screaming. G+ we all all wanted to get attention & traffic from FB but sadly the whole world is trying to copy FB...including Twitter.

I also still blog some stuff but FB is just a hot mess. Shame Zuckerman keeps tweaking thing.

None of my fam uses FB due to privacy issues.

I use FB just to help keep in contact with band I help promote & to read some Tweeps stuff (Twitter people)

G+ is mostly geeks but too much FB & G+ gets political.

For NASCAR and any business, I do not like the double column format & oversized pictures.

Fonts hard to read...even enlarged, everything runs off the page.

I do not understand the love for Facebook & never have.

Also lots of viruses there & hacking.

LVI56 said...

I've had the Timeline for months, I'm used to it, understand it and can sit back and chuckle at everyone's complaints.

I'm really interested to see how fan and business pages will be affected when it's rolled out over there. Right now, I see Google+ as the best place for a true "news feed"

Sophia said...

P.S. I saw Zuckerman and some woman interviewed on Charlie Rose a few months back. Charlie tried repeatedly to challenge the privacy issues (of which there are many, layered deep!) with Facebook and Zuckerman played that down and downright lied!

FB makes changes to make private things public again. Why people have the stamina to put up with that aggravation, I don't know.

More shocking is the what many put on FB with a public profile for anybody to read. Including phone numbers. Asking for trouble. TMI.

Thus the "love affair" many have for using and spending hours on FB have my shaking my head.

Yes NASCAR needs to get on SM but please don't EXPECT all to embrace it. It's still no excuse for poorly produced broadcasting. And while watching tv, don't insult your audience by saying "for more highlights/interviews, go to our website yada, yada. I'm watching tv...not always in the mood to multi-task.

Then again, I have a dumbphone, w no camera, I call people and do not text.

Semi-luddite Soph

Roland said...

Facebook is in decline. The changes do not help. Just makes people mad.

22 BAD U LOST said...

And the winner is ----------brand

Anonymous said...

If you think about it there is little Facebook and Twitter do that cant be done with email.

HOWEVER, it allows you to disseminate your thoughts and or needs to a much larger group of people. That is of course what it is designed to do. And in that regard it is useful and benign.

Now does that mean you should lay your whole life open to the world? Of course not, but if you choose to do it that's your perogative.

It without a doubt has become the favored way of transmitting news to the public. And any group or business that wants to advertise needs to be on both of them.

The interesting thing is what will be the new greatest thing after them?

john armbruster said...

If there is one constant about Facebook, it is users wishing to keep the previous version while forgetting that, about six months ago, they were bemoaning having to get used to that very version. I'll admit my first reaction to the timeline was the same as everyone elses: MySpace. But really, after a week or so, the changes do not seem that radical. It is still a vertical, chronological stream; however, the zig-zag layout now allows for much larger thumbnails of pictures and videos. The "cover" is pretty MySpace like, but not nearly as obtrusive as the MySpace backround. The header thumbnails are larger and easier to see. The biggest change is the timeline navigation: instead of being forced to scroll endlessly down a profile, the small navigation bar allows to jump directly to a year or event. I see this being a great feature for commercial sites. As long as FB keeps threaded posts, it will never be a clunky as MySpace was with its unthreaded comments. Give everyone two months, and they'll be confident enough with the navigation to complain about the next change.
Now, to the person who commented that FB changes its format to reset the privacy settings: that is probably an astute observation...I think that is the price we will continually pay whatever the social network site now that all are trending toward profit through targeted advertising.

Jonathan said...

I use to love MySpace never thought I would use Facebook and that was 2 years ago wow was I wrong. I cant remember the last time I signed into MySpace why was I turned off in the first place change change change. Now Facebook is doing a major change I hope this dosent kill facebook like the major change MySpace did killed them a couple years ago. I dont get it if its not broken why fix it?

Sally said...

@Sophia, so nice to know I'm not the only one here who likes my provacy to stay must that...private! I've never understood the ned some have to expose so much of their private life to the world.

PammH said...

this is gonna tick me off big-time when FB does this! I have NO timeline w/them. I have 1 pic & don't post often. How stupid...:( I just follow some folks & post once in awhile.

fbu1 said...

From NASCAR's perspective, social media makes sense. Checking on your favorite driver or track event is a huge upside. In many ways, a well organized FB page makes a website superfluous.

The downside is that one must join the flock of FB sheep to access those pages. I resent those who enjoy anonymous grazing on the details of other people lives. It is no different than peeking into your neighbor's window.

I guess that it depends on how much individuals value their privacy. Many people embrace the Open ID model, but others hate it. I especially resent being a "product" that Zuckerman markets to his advertisers.

Bruce said...

It seems snazzy, but for the individual who does not want to get caught up in the marketing and selling of their content to the marketing partners of Facebook, well, this will be one whopping add-on for them that will make getting your info, a bit easier.

Sure, FB has it's place. If you lock everything down properly, it's an awesome family chat and update tool.

But every time they change something, well, it seems up to the user to go back in and modify the security settings once again.

Sigh. FaceSpace or MyBook... it is definitely looking that way.