Wednesday, June 8, 2011...12:37 pm

Facebook: why is the world’s most popular site so difficult to use?

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Any reader looking to the right of this post will see a blank Facebook feed requiring a login to see a “Facebook public profile”. Or maybe a feed from my Freelance Unbound Facebook page. Or maybe they’ll see something else that I don’t see – because Facebook is nothing if not contrary.
The other day I finally got around to setting up the Freelance Unbound Facebook page. Anyone who likes it (even just a little) will get to see lots of extra fun stuff from this media empire including, yes, pictures of my dog editorial assistant.
But making the feed actually show up is a nightmare.

  • It’s supposed to be a publicly visible page, but Facebook asks for a login to see it (whose? No idea)
  • It was supposed to be published, but then Facebook said it wasn’t. So I published it and it showed up. Now it’s gone again. And again.
  • I keep logging in to Facebook and it keeps logging me out – even when I check the “keep me logged in” box. Is it trying to tell me something?
  • As an aside, my feed from Freelance Unbound is supposed to go through to my personal profile, but it seems to have vanished

Aside from all the flak that Facebook has taken for its attitude to privacy, my problem with the site is that it is just a pig to use. Has anyone else experienced this?
Find me on Facebook? Fat chance…


  • How many websites really pass the useability test? To my mind, desperately few. I’m always cursing the various sites I regularly use for one reason or another.
    The ‘perfect’ site that scores 100% on useability will, of course, never be coded. But even after 15 years of mainstream public acceptance, the web still offers a fairly crappy user experience most of the time, for most people. If we’re honest.
    So many of the problems derive from the medium’s inception; expanded and driven in the early days by geeks who cared nothing for non-geeky norms, the browser-based web suffered an evil cradling that it’s never really outgrown.
    I keep hoping that the non-browser web, so promising at the moment, will take a different path.

  • Does that mean you won’t like me? Please do…

  • I totally agree. Just today I had an email saying someone I’d never heard of had posted something to my wall, but could I find it? I haven’t even found the damned wall yet!

  • Are you even registered on Facebook? That’s a key requirement…

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