Facebook’s most recent groundbreaking feature, Smart Lists, has officially been launched. This long-awaited feature automatically organizes friends into four different lists: work, school, family and city. The opportunity for Facebook lists has been in the works since late 2007, and now it’s finally here.
Facebook users are now given the option to organize their friends into lists enabling them to only share comments and pictures with that specific list. The tedious effort of picking what individuals belong in which group – and the difficulty to find this feature in the interface and to utilize it has resulted in only about 5% of Facebook users actually using the Friend List feature previously.
Smart lists will automatically organize themselves based on what the Facebook user chooses to share with their friends. Facebook will group people who are related, live near one another, went to school together or work together into individual lists. Instead of being overwhelmed with the hundreds of updates from all of your Facebook friends, you can limit the list to specific groups. Smart Lists will be in direct competition with Google+ Circles, and Facebook intends to make Smart Lists as similar to Google+ Circles as possible.
The competition between Google+ and Facebook is said to be the reason why these changes are taking place. The creation of Smart Lists gives Facebook a leg-up on Google+ Circles because they do not require the difficult task of manually creating the lists. Despite the fact that Facebook is behind Kantango and Google + with the development of Smart Lists, it is still predicted that Facebook will have more impact with these changes because of their 750 million users.
Facebook has also implemented a feature where you can classify people as “acquaintances” or “close friends.” These lists will not be generated automatically; they will have to be done independently. However, once they are created they will give you the option of viewing the News Feed for specifically close friends or acquaintances. It is important to note that Smart Lists are optional to use and can also be changed once the lists are created.
This new feature will allow Facebook users to only share and see information that they are interested in sharing. With the new privacy improvements made to Facebook and the generation of Smart Lists, it is expected that individuals will be more comfortable sharing information on Facebook which will increase micro-sharing, and Facebook activity overall.
By creating Smart Lists, Facebook has made the content in the News Feed more relevant to each individual. Users will no longer have to see daily status updates from a person they hardly remain in contact with, and they can constantly keep track of what their closest friends are up to. Facebook has optimized time and relevance for its users, and continues to strengthen it’s presence in the ever-changing world of social media. Have you begun utilizing Facebook’s Smart Lists?