Facebook is really, if you think about it, an engine of oversharing. It makes it a little too easy to share everything from your photos to sketchy news sites. And now, that oversharing is about to reach new heights with a “list” feature that lets users easily make bulleted lists. And Facebook wants you to post your to-do list, in particular.
In the abstract, this is a neat idea, although it’s pretty easy to see a few downsides. Your angry relatives really do not need the ability to make lists of their political opinions. But there are many genuinely useful items you can list off, like lists of podcasts, lists of movies you’ve seen this year, bullet-pointed directions to a meeting place, lists of things you would prefer your angry relatives not make lists of which they then post to your Wall. There are many useful lists, but Facebook, according to TechCrunch, really seems to want your to-do lists:
The goal with features like these is to push users to post more personal updates – like stories about their lives, what they’re up to, and what they’re thinking. These types of posts were once Facebook’s bread-and-butter, and enticed friends to log back in to see what others were saying. But over the years, Facebook’s News Feed has filled with videos, links, news, memes, updates from Facebook Pages, and, of course, ads.
Why, of course, is obvious. Facebook wants to know what you’re doing so it can push more (and more accurate) ads at you. Also, getting personal will help the company integrate deeper into the lives of its users — which has always been the goal. If you post a to-do list that includes changing the cat litter and doing the dishes, ads for litter and dishwashers will likely start turning up on your feed. Still, if it makes the platform more useful, that won’t be a bad thing; the feature is getting a slow rollout across the whole site across this week.
Just make sure you don’t list anything too personal, for the sake of not seeing the ads that will result if nothing else.