I still refuse to use Facebook, a decision that is validated every time company hits the news, but I have to admit, if I were to build a site that required registration I would be sorely tempted to use this registration tool:
Facebook has launched a new registration tool that enables websites to offer quick and easy social options for users to sign-up.
This is a terrific alternative to using Facebook Login, (formerly known as Facebook Connect) especially when 1) You would like to provide an option for those users who don’t have Facebook account, 2) Your site requires additional information not available on Facebook, or 3) You want the flexibility of HTML, molding the login to your site in any way you see fit.
It’s ideal to minimize any sort of inconvenience for the user on your website, and traditionally, a registration page has been a big turn off for users. Often times they don’t see the value. With Facebook’s registration tool, you make it easy for people to sign up and bring their friends with them, and it’s proven that people are more likely to follow through with the sign up process, will be active on sites longer, share more content, and return more often. For example, FriendFeed beta tested the tool and their sign ups by users with Facebook increased by 300%.
There’s an interesting story at The Atlantic about how Facebook responded to the Tunisian hacks, when governmental forces there tried to compromise the security of citizen’s accounts. These two nuggets struck me as typically Zuckerbergian:
At Facebook, Sullivan’s team decided to take an apolitical approach to the problem. This was simply a hack that required a technical response. “At its core, from our standpoint, it’s a security issue around passwords and making sure that we protect the integrity of passwords and accounts,” he said. “It was very much a black and white security issue and less of a political issue.”
“We get requests all the time in a few different contexts where people would like to impersonate someone else. Police wanting to go undercover or human rights activists, say,” Sullivan said. “And we, just based on our core mission and core product, don’t want to allow that. That’s just not what Facebook is. Facebook is a place where people connect with real people in their lives using their real identities.”
It’s hard to see anything wrong with those statements, but they’re yet more examples of how Facebook takes an engineering approach to human issues.
Facebook runs on a very stiff, crude model of what people are like. It herds everybody — friends, co-workers, romantic partners, that guy who lived on your block but moved away after fifth grade — into the same big room. It smooshes together your work self and your home self, your past self and your present self, into a single generic extruded product. It suspends the natural process by which old friends fall away over time, allowing them to build up endlessly, producing the social equivalent of liver failure. On Facebook, there is one kind of relationship: friendship, and you have it with everybody. You’re friends with your spouse, and you’re friends with your plumber.