Friday, October 5, 2012

Facebook Inc (NASDAQ:FB) introduces paid services, although, strictly speaking, it is still “free”

Facebook Inc(NASDAQ:FB), on Wednesday, introduced a test of service according to which, Facebook users will have to pay $7 to make their posts more conspicuous in their friends’ newsfeed.  This service was rolled out to the U.S and twenty other countries, much like a test drive.

By introducing it to only a section of the users on Facebook, the social-networking site wants to gauge the reactions and the amount of popularity, or criticism this service will receive. But they are hopeful about the conditions, because the News Feed in the homepage is usually filled with various different posts and activities by various different people. By paying the site, the users can amp up the conspicuousness of their own posts. So in order to make a particular status message more prominent, or to promote the adoption of abandoned kittens, all one really needs to do is pay $7. What with the news feed of many different people together, and the advertisements coming from different advertisers, this would be a welcome solution for people who want their message conveyed to as many of their friends, as is possible.

Abhishek Doshi, an engineer on Facebook, put up a post regarding the promotion of the new service. According to him, if a user wanted to make one of his/her activities more prominent, then paying seven dollars would make it so. The test however, is being limited to people who have less than 5,000 friends and subscribers on the site.

This is lucrative for the site, because it controls the algorithms which control the information being given out on the news feed. It should operate in a way, so as to show the interesting news on the homepage newsfeed, but the very fact that Facebook controls the algorithms, also makes it an opportunity to buck up the finances.
Strictly speaking, however, Facebook is still free for all, although people are raising their eyebrows at how the phrase “free for all” is becoming a little troublesome, with all these stipulations coming in. But the site needs to make up for what its losing out on, what with advertisers backing out of ads on Facebook. 

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