Facebook users may have noticed a subtle change in the site starting yesterday. The social media site changed its “subscribe” feature to “follow.”
As InsideFacebook reports, Facebook’s “subscribe” feature dates back to September, 2011 and works in a similar fashion to Twitter. It allows users to look at the content of people they are interested in, although they don’t know them. Many Facebook users use the feature to catch news updates of their favorite celebrities because it allows them to see their news, without requiring the celebrity to friend them.
That feature will be available on the timelines of any users who have chosen to enable that option. The “follow” button also appears on interest lists. According to Facebook Inc (NASDAQ:FB), the site will still function the same, but it did decide to change the word so that users would be able to recognize it better. There’s little doubt that Facebook Inc (NASDAQ:FB) made the change because of Twitter, which is known for popularizing the term “follow” within social media.
The “follow” term is already in use on Facebook in the Open Graph feature, which is available in some Facebook apps. If the developer of the app has added the feature to it, then users are able to see their friends’ activity in the app on their News Feed, without actually going into the app to see what they are doing. So in some ways this is simply a migration of the term from the Open Graph option to the rest of the site.