Facebook Inc (NASDAQ:FB) just keeps stealing ideas from Twitter. The company already copied Twitter’s hashtag and enabled embedding posts. Now it is in the process of testing trending topics—just like Twitter.
Is Facebook trying to be the new Twitter?
Evilyn M. Rusli of The Wall Street Journal’s Digits blog reports that the trending topics tests come about two months after Facebook Inc (NASDAQ:FB) rolled out Twitter-like hashtags. Of course those are keywords in posts which are marked with a #. Trending topics essentially work with hashtags to help the social network’s users see which topics are trending on the site. It’s quite similar to the trends box on Twitter, showing off various topics with their hashtags if they are being talked about by a large number of Facebook’s user.
A spokesperson for the social network confirmed to The Wall Street Journal that they are testing trending topics. She said that currently trending topics are only available to a small percentage of users in the U.S. She also indicated that they are still developing the feature and that they would release more information about it if they decide to roll it out to a broader scale.
Facebook versus Twitter
Facebook Inc (NASDAQ:FB) is clearly worried about its competition with Twitter as the two battle for domination in the world of real-time conversions taking place online. It is an important battle because whichever social network is the most popular one for talk surrounding popular television shows and major news events will look the most attractive to advertisers.
At this point online advertising platforms like Facebook and Twitter are vying for advertising dollars which are shifting from offline ads to online ads. Twitter is already considered by many as the leader in trending topics and real-time online conversations, while Facebook Inc (NASDAQ:FB) has been viewed in a slightly different light in terms of engagement. However, by getting in on the very features which make Twitter so popular, Facebook is trying to make a play for that area of online engagement as well.