Facebook is rolling out its questions feature to users. While I’m waiting to see the feature in action, I’m not too excited that this will be some type of killer feature.
As a highly opinionated person, it’s not much of stretch that I’m not a fan of crowd sourcing. To me, Questions seems like running out into the street and yelling your question out, hoping that some sane persona passing by will answer it in a timely, relevant, and much saner manner than you asked. These people are either saints or madmen. I’m not sure which.
Still, Facebook Questions will be better than similar services such as Formspring or Yahoo! Answers only because people won’t be anonymous. If people start asking dumb questions like, “Am I pregnant?!” or “I think I have a STD, do I?” the question will be associated with that person’s name and profile. This means one thing: Public Ridicule. While I don’t like to call people out, shame is a good tool to prevent really dumb questions.
The more features Facebook rolls out, the more Facebook becomes like AOL in the late 90’s. There’s a lot of interesting, useful, and relevant content on the site, but you know there is much more when you get off of Facebook and go onto the rest of the web. Questions is one more feature designed to try and keep people coming back for more, but doesn’t seem fully baked.
The biggest problem with Questions is it doesn’t connect you with your friends. Sure, you could make a new “friend” or ten, but the nature of this feature doesn’t build on any of the existing relationships you have. Where is the network in this social network?
So, do you want 500 million bad answers, or one good answer?