I joined Facebook about six months after it became public (as in, not just for college students) to all (I didn’t do it right away because we were all on Friendster back then; aw, remember Friendster?). Back then, there were no company pages — not until the end of 2007, anyway, and hardly anyone used them; certainly no bloggers used them for their blogs.
So of course all of my blog readers friended me rather than “liking” my blog page, meaning I’ve been pushing the 5000 friend limit on Facebook for a while now.
But good news! There are solid rumors that Facebook is getting ready to remove that friend limit.
The official reason that Facebook has the limit in the first place, of course, is that they inherently believed no one really has that many “friends,” and they wanted to promote Facebook as a more intimate place for only your “real” friends. But as we move through our lives and school and work and organizations, well, we can make a hell of a lot of friends.
It turns out the reason for raising the limit is, primarily, because bloggers and members of the media tend to push the limit on friends on Facebook, according to TechCrunch.
Facebook says that “less than 1,000³ users have 5,000 friends today. There are around 70 million active Facebook users, so the number of users who are affected is around one thousandth of a percent. But a disproportionate percentage of bloggers and press are at the limit, so the issue tends to get a lot more attention than it otherwise would.
I’ve actually considered turning my personal Facebook account into a “page” and then starting a new Facebook account just for my closest friends and family, but if the limit is going to be raised I’ll skip that. I’ll continue to use the grouping features on Facebook to organize my friends instead.
What do you think? Is this a good move on Facebook’s part? Is it really necessary?