The Joys of Facebook’s Redesign

Facebook has redesigned their site again hoping to squash some complaints that the site is cluttered and not user-friendly. Did Facebook succeed with the new redesign and create a clean site with an intuitive interface and good flow? Many users say no. The big problem is that Facebook has transformed itself from a community to easily connect with friends to a website that is trying to become "The King" of all social networks filled with lots of bells and whistles and useless apps and widgets. In trying to become "King" and replicate Twitter, design, ease of use and organization has been sacrificed. The site has ended up cluttered again because Facebook feels the need to feature the kitchen sink. From the second you login, an overwhelming amount of info is instantly thrown at you. Your eyes go all over the place trying to find the information you are searching for.

Remember back in the day when the "Wall" was used to write and display personal notes between you and your friends? Over the last year, the wall has morphed into a space displaying both your and your friends recent comments, recent activity, tags, imported notes and news, etc. It’s a lot to process and less personal.

The Highlights Column on the right hand side is out of control. It features a long list of suggested groups to join, events to attend, more cause and fan pages and of course advertising.

However, the Facebook redesign is not all bad. The improved filter system is cool and lets you create your own filters using Friend Lists. You can also filter by applications, like Photos. The left hand column is clean and also gives the user some flexibility to drag and drop filters and reorder them as well as hide apps.

Despite some modest improvements, the new design has created more clunk and junk and less meaningful interaction.

What do you think of Facebook’s new redesign? Thumbs up or thumbs down?

Allyson Kapin is the Founding Partner of Rad Campaign and the Founder of Women Who Tech. You can follow her on Twitter.


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  • Catherine Ford

    I'm new to Facebook, so I can't say if I like the new design over the old. However, I have been very frustrated with Facebook deleting messages that I post on my wall within a few minutes of each other. It usually deletes the first message. Sometimes that makes the second message meaningless. It's very frustrating! I use it, but am not yet a big fan!

  • Nancy Shoemaker

    I recall the last FB redesign going through a 2-3 week shakedown before it started to make sense. I think their algorithms to show what's interesting need work -- if one of my friends is sending Easter Eggs to folks, I really don't want their 30 gifts to dominate what I see when I choose a filter where they're included. I, too, miss the "show me more/show me less" options -- instead of this versions all-or-nothing "hide/show". I'm also disappointed that the redesign didn't include any better way to get information about activity in groups.

  • Suzi W.

    Thumbs down. I think FB will become less of a place to visit--call me lazy, but I don't want to create more filters. I liked the 186 folks you want to hear more about and the 186 folks you don't want to hear about functionality from the last re-do. It seems almost as if they've taken away choice from the user unless you want to create filters. Gone is the I want less video, more links functionality--I am really disappointed.

    On the other hand, FB is a free way to stay connected to a large group of people I'd otherwise not connect with. Tough call.