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Your Future Is Now!

Erwin predicts, writes about the future & developments today.

Brand: Facebook

(all brands)

Facebook and Twitter on Xbox

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Facebook gives people a say in privacy rights

CEO Mark Zuckerberg of Facebook indicates on his blog that users will get a say in the 'terms of service', a say in privacy and the sharing of data.


Future vision by Erwin Van Lun

Everything is about ‘together’. Currently for Facebook, but later this’ll go for every brand.

And where privacy is concerned it’ll be really simple: users will get full control. They get to decide who gets access to which data when and for how long. And with ‘who’ I mean other brands too. So that you can trust certain brands to use certain personal data permanently. Like your address. In my book I already gave a slew of examples of this (so I’ve already given them in 2005; later more on the evaluation of my predictions).

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Facebook allows third parties to ask questions

Facebook will let brands (call it advertisers for now) ask their 150 million members questions through polls. The first brands to do this are career site Careerbuilder and pizza delivery service Papa John's. People can't just see what the results were, but also what their friends voted.


Future vision by Erwin Van Lun

Brands will start to use friends-of-friends networks. In time you’ll be able to indicate what you think of certain services and show it to your friends. Then you can indicate with Facebook what your favourite brands are. That’ll be the brands who can ask you questions, and with whom you want to share your details of yor friends, at least indicate who your friends are. And perhaps the brand will know your friend too and you’ll have a conversational topic. Those are the most important components of tribal thinking that’s taking shape. Asking questions, listening, imagining, asking on. Something very different from sending. But something that’ll eventually only strengthen brands.

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Facebook puts friends on telephone homepage

Facebook is now available on the Xperia™ X1 phone of Sony Ericsson. On this photos of your friends will integrate on the desktop of your phone (standby-screen), you can see their latest status changes if you touch the pictures and you get more options if you touch them again, including calling them. Furthermore you can quickly upload photos to Facebook. The Facebook panels can be downloaded for free using the built-in download function of the smartphone or from the Sony Ericsson website (choose 'Panels')


Future vision by Erwin Van Lun

Personal media connects to what’s closest to people: friends, family, warm relationships. Currently it’s useful to call with 1 click, but later on you can say that you’d like to be called only by friends, or by friends of friends. That brands still want to call too, that’s their problem. All brands we trust get a separate rule and can call us on occasion. And brands like Facebook, social coaching brands in the making, are at the gate to remove their unwanted behaviour (permanently). It won’t be long now.

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Facebook lets brands connect people

Using Facebook Connect brands can discover whether their customers really know one another. Firstly it's a means for site manages not to do any identification of site visitors, but to let Facebook do it. For example, who registers on video community site HowCast clicks on the 'FConnect' button (or: 'register via Facebook'). Then an extra screen is added in which have to enter your Facebook username/password and then returns you to the main screen. Your name and photo have now appeared and your gender has been entered too. Useful, easy, and quick.


Future vision by Erwin Van Lun

Yet it won’t stop here. Facebook claims ‘real identity’. Of course there’s no sign of that. On Facebook too you can pretend to be whoever you want and you can take that weird identity with you everywhere. Later on you’ll really need to verify your identity on Facebook, using a copy of your passport and Facebook will make a distinction between ‘authenticated users’ and ‘registered users’. And later that won’t be good enough either and you’ll need to identify yourself in a physical office to make a connection to a social networking account. Every social networking account, not just Facebook. And that world-wide. And then we’re not even talking about password security. Actually you should be connected through your webcam, Facebook can look into your eyes, have a small conversation with you (all automated of course) and only then let you join. If we’re talking about ‘real identity’ there are still some steps to take.

But for brands this already offers gigantic opportunities. Finally you can understand what role your customers play in social life. Which consumers are connected? How do they (and exactly they) pass things along? Brands can finally start to think tribally to get access to the customers social life.

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Transferable profiles on Facebook

Facebook-users will soon be able to use their profile data on other sites. With a click of the button users will be able to add their profile data to all the websites that participate in different projects of the two community sites.


Future vision by Erwin Van Lun

While we used to have a separate device for each part of our life, we find that today devices are becoming ‘Masters of all trades’. Think of the mobile phone that just about lacks the same function as a refrigerator, but can do pretty much everything else. Might be over the top, but it’s a trend that’s also developing in services. An all-in-one profile! It’s a concrete and big step towards the idea that, as a user, you only need one virtual identity. While we now have to register separately on different sites, environments and virtual worlds, in future we’ll only need one profile to cover the entire internet. You’ll register yourself for Hyves and, during your registration, you indicate that your profile can also be registered on Ebay. So one username with one password set up only once. Also think about ready-made computers from a computer store (like the German MediaMarkt). During your very first installation (of Windows) you’ll be asked whether your personal information may also be registered at sites of your choice. The consumer will need only one password. Just like there is only one you in the real world, there will be only one unique virtual you. The Everything-doer. 

Facebook shows purchases to friends

Social Network Facebook shows your friends what you bought in online shops connected to Facebook (mb, Dutch). This has led to all kinds of privacy discussions. Which makes sense: of course you don't just want to show your friends everything you do. But sharing information with friends is the innovation here. In the future shops will recognize friends, and they will ask you if your purchases and your experiences there can be included in advice for your friends. That is a slightly different way of doing it, but much more pure. What does Facebook have to do with all purchases I make somewhere else?

Facebook connects to ActiveWorlds

Social Network Facebook recently has made a connection with 3D world ActiveWorlds (similar to SecondLife). After clicking an ActiveWorlds icon, Facebook asks permission to pass on login information to ActiveWorlds. Facebook asks to pass on:

  • Know who I am and access my information
  • Put a box in my profile
  • Place a link in my left-hand navigation
  • Publish stories in my News Feed and Mini-Feed
  • Place a link below the profile picture on any profile
Then part of ActiveWorlds appears within FaceBook (dc, Dutch). This illustrates how brands in the future pass on information of customers. Coaching brands, brands that have access to the consumer (Facebook is a developing social coaching brand), will very carefully manage the information, but they will make it easy for consumers to transfer the information, so that they don't have to give the same information over and over again. This is an example of how this can go.

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Facebook gets users involved

Users of one of the biggest online social networks in the world: Facebook, from now on can develop applications for this social network, and share them with others. Facebook provides the tools that even an 8-year-old should be able to use (em, Dutch). Brands are experiencing a brand coming out: the border between employee and consumer fades, the brand manager becomes a facilitator, and the brand grows stronger than ever. This is a small step in that direction.

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