The new Friendship Pages feature announced by Facebook on its blog on Friday is now live in Australia. Very simply, it takes all the past Facebook interactions between two friends and offers them up for viewing on one page. These include events signed up together, photos where both are tagged, wall posts and comments to each other and groups signed up to.
The pages can be found via links under relevant Wall posts, under relationship stories and under the main photo on one friend’s profile page.
Visitors can view the pages if they are friends with one of the people and have permission to view both profiles. A feature that I noticed when the pages went live was a search box under ‘Browse Friendships’ on the Friendship Page which allows you to input two names and then see the Friendship Page for them. This is where it gets creepy, because you can now pull up every interaction between 2 people and scrutinize it at leisure even if you only are friends with one. One useful addition would be a Share and Like button for these Friendship Pages, cos if someones got a great Facebook Friend I’m sure they would like to flaunt it.
While the stated objective may be to shine a spotlight on enduring and strong friendships, these pages could also lead to some negative reactions on closer observation. How about ‘Envy’ when you realise your bestie has been interacting more with another friend, or ‘Anger’ when you find your spouse/partner has been having deep interactions with someone else or an ex. There is no clarity on how or if one can opt out of the feature or hide visibility of the pages.
On the positive side it’s great for power users with lots of friends (500+) who use the social features a lot. If you post frequently to your friends walls, comment on every status update and tag them in every pic you’re going to love it. If all you do is share links and update your status, then this isn’t for you. Actually you’re better off on Twitter.