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November 16, 2006

Comments

you should just make a group. profiles are for people, groups are for everything else.

brianmathews

That comment above is from a facebook IP, interesting. The issue is that we are not a group. Libraries are service providers. Setting up a group space doesn't allow us the same utilities, such a messaging our users. It would be nice to leverage our brand in the form of "friendships" gained by student endorsement. Libraries are a part of the social and academic culture and interacting with sudents in a native environment would be mutually beneficial.

yup, facebook ip. Facebook groups are a native environment - i don't understand why you value friendships differently than group affiliations. People aren't really _friends_ with libraries - they are friends with people who work at the library or they have an affiliation with the library itself.
What besides messaging do you think is different about the group affiliation? You can, btw, message all the users of a group. You can also communicate through the discussions boards. 1x1 messaging should just happen using the account of the person actually talking. It doesn't make sense to me that you need to actually send messages as "The Library", unless you are trying to use it as a support queue (but it's not our fault if facebook isn't designed to take over that function).
It's very important to facebook functionality that the concept of a person in a friendship stays restricted to the real work definition - besides some product implications, friendships in the graph act as privacy permissioning. I don't think people who want to interact with the library should necessarily have to expose their profiles to it's admins. Additionally, there is some 2-degree privacy in the system: having lots of people connected through an entity is not the same as being connected through a mutual friend, and shouldn't expose your profile either. This is the primary reason we take down fakesters as well.
Groups can be made to be just as useful and deep as a person profile, but they allow us to keep the conceptual and functional distinction. That's why I asked what you thought was missing - groups already have many of the same features as profiles like photos and the wall. But it would be silly to have the library list interests, don't you think?

Also, your brand is better leveraged as a group, because that way it can show up in the user's profile. If it's a friendship, only that user will see it.

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