On the heels of recently implemented, but unpopular, site "enhancements," Facebook is preparing another slap in the face to its Facebook student devotees and to Web 2.0 "users are in control" proponents worldwide.
Facebook is throwing caution to the wind and shedding its founding principle of participation by educational insitutional affiliation only policy, according to Forbes reports:
"Once the exclusive online stomping grounds of college students, social networking site Facebook.com is throwing open the doors to rest of the world. The site is slated to announce in coming weeks that anyone can gain access to the site, simply by affiliating themselves with a particular city or region."
Facebook is calling its new anonymous, open house strategy "expanded registration."
The Facebook about face will ultimately prove to be either a gutsy, genius move to scale its platform for enhanced monetization or a foolhardy stab at playing catch up with MySpace. Right or wrong, Facebook is compelled to make a big move.
Mark Zuckerberg, Facebook founder and CEO, is apparently putting his Harvard education, and $38 million in venture funding, to intelligent use. When Facebook subcontracted its ad sales to Microsoft I dismayed "Why can't facebook sell its own ads?" I applaud Facebook now for its taking the social network by the horns and attempting to bring some old school business logic to its operations.
When will MySpace, YouTube, Digg, Wikipedia...start flexing their own Web 2.0 muscles and let their non-paying users know loud and clear who is "in control!"