Facebook launches Timeline Movie Maker

Summary:Facebook has launched Timeline Movie Maker, an app that creates a movie out of content on your new Facebook Timline. Does your movie improve your opinion of Timeline? Facebook hopes so.

Facebook today launched a new app called Timeline Movie Maker, which creates a movie highlighting moments from your Timeline (you'll thus need to get the new profile if you don't have it yet, in order to use this app). Marketing agency Definition6 built the app with Facebook, and Definition6 CTO Paul Hernacki just made the announcement via Twitter: "Pure awesomeness- Facebook and @Definition6 are proud to launch www.timelinemoviemaker.com - Make an instant movie of your Facebook content."

There are no instructions: just a green "Make Your Movie" button. After you click it, you're asked to install the app. As you can see in the screenshot above, the app requires that you give it access to your basic info, your e-mail address, your profile info (activities, birthday, hometown, Likes, location, relationship status, religious views, political views, and work history), as well as your stories (events, photos, videos, and posts with location). If you're comfortable with that, your one-minute movie will be built automatically for you. Timeline Movie Maker is initially only available in English, French, Spanish, and German.

Your video only takes a few minutes to create (during the process you'll see a few photos from your Timeline in the background). It works by evaluating the content you have shared with the public and with friends, and then identifies the most engaging and relevant life moments to build a chronological story for your customized mini-movie.

Once the app is done, you can watch the movie, as well as choose accompanying music (five soundtracks to choose from) and/or change photos, videos, check-ins, and so on. When you're satisfied, you can share your Timeline movie with your Facebook friends. Unsurprisingly, there doesn't seem to be an option to share it elsewhere, such as on YouTube.

The app is clearly Facebook's attempt to build up hype around Timeline, or at least get its user more comfortable with it. Last week, the company started pushing all its users to Timeline, so it makes sense to start promoting the feature. What better way to do that than by getting your member base to do the advertising for you?

Less than two weeks ago, the domains timelinemoviemaker.com (Whois), timelinemoviemaker.net (Whois), and timelinemoviemaker.org (Whois) were privately registered. Some speculated that Facebook was thus building a movie maker app for Timeline. Given that Facebook rarely builds apps itself, and instead lets partners build apps for its platform, I wasn't so sure. When the domain started redirecting to facebook.com/about/timeline, however, I vowed to keep an eye on it since Facebook is clearly the owner.

Today I discovered that the domain had stopped redirecting and is being used to host content. This seems to have happened quietly: I don't see an announcement from Menlo Park. I have contacted Facebook and will update you if I hear back.

Update: "We think there will be lots of companies that come up with fun, innovative ways for people to extend the Timeline experience," a Facebook spokesperson said in a statement. Curiously, the company didn't mention anything about its participation.

I was, however, told to get in touch with Definition 6, but the marketing firm had already reached out to me and confirmed the launch of the Facebook app. I was also told the product is designed "to enable people to view their Facebook Timeline content through a personalized cinematic experience" and "demonstrates how Facebook as a platform is showing marketers ways in which they can connect with consumers on an emotional level and in a highly personalized fashion."

See also:

Topics: Social Enterprise

About

Emil is a freelance journalist writing for CNET and ZDNet. Over the years, he has covered the tech industry for multiple publications, including Ars Technica, Neowin, and TechSpot.

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