Thursday, September 6, 2007

Facebook's NewsFriends

I can’t live without my Facebook! I’m sure that most of you have either said or thought these exact words at some point over the last few years. Making it hard to remember what life was like before Facebook in a world where one had to call up friends and actually talk to them to keep in touch and find out what was going on in their lives. Today you can do almost anything on Facebook without actually doing it. From stalking...I mean...learning about your friend’s day-to-day lives to catching up on the latest movies and books just by checking out what your friends have to say about them.

For some, is seems like a big waist of time indulging in such trivial matters but for all of you out there that thought Facebook was for entertainment value alone prepare to be shocked. Facebook is now the latest one-stop-shop for, you guessed it, the news. While sifting through the hits on my RSS feeds I came across a story from News Gator Daily entitled, “
Hello Facebook? Say Hello to Your NewsFriends.” The article discussed Facebook’s newly added free application called NewsFriends. Which allows users to easily find, read and share blogs, news, videos and podcasts with their “friends.” It’s simple to use and along with your own chosen feeds it automatically allows you to get the same news that your friends are getting.

As stated in the article by Richard MacManus of ReadWriteWeb:

“NewsFriends is not designed to be the main news reader for power users of products like FeedDemon or NetNewsWire, but it’s a great complement to those products when those users are spending time on Facebook.”

NewsFriends is provided by NewsGator Technologies and is a great way for Facebook-junkies who aren’t currently using a dedicated RSS reader to get all the benefits within a familiar environment. Where you can “post” your favorite articles and comments on a profile page or check out which of your friends was the first to subscribe to a Web site.

I think that in a world where younger generations aren’t spending half as much time skimming news pages as they are their friend’s pages, myself included, that bringing the news directly to them is a great development. Facebook is on their level; they know Facebook and are not intimidated by it. By placing news outlets in a very familiar place it not only allows younger generations easy access to them but also just might create an environment where the free flow of news content become like second nature.

To add the free NewsFriends application to your Facebook account click

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