Facebook adds inline comments

Facebook comment replies cartoon -

Finally, you can tell that troll what an asshole he is on Facebook directly.

Facebook announced that pages would have inline comments added to pages. This means that page owners and other Facebook users can reply directly to specific comments. The feature is optional now, but will be turned on for all pages on July 10, 2013.

(As an aside: why did Facebook publish this news on the Facebook + Journalists page? You think such a big announcement that affects all pages would be announced to page managers. Jerks.)

Here’s what you can expect between now and then.

  • Thousands of blog posts regurgitating the news that Facebook has turned this on.
  • At least one "case study" of a page using the comment replies successfully. This study will demonstrate no real value for a business, but social media "experts" will flock to it.
  • Several thousand blog posts of ways you can "maximize" your page with comment replies turned on.
  • Hundreds of community managers sighing in relief.

As you can see, most of the "value" here isn’t value. Most of this is marketers trying to compete in a "First to publish!" mentality. For many pages, this just adds another layer of complexity as people get into pointless arguments.

There are two uses that do make immediate sense to me though: hosting discussions and replying to customer service issues.

For discussions, the value of seeing threading conversations makes much more sense. No need to dig through an endless scroll of questions. For customer service, again, you can see everything in one place.

This update won’t stop idiots and morons from hijacking discussions. That will always happen. But at least for now, our conversations on Facebook can make a little more sense.

4 Responses to Facebook adds inline comments

  1. Jen April 1, 2013 at 8:12 am #

    Agreed! I do think the threaded comments are a great addition but overall not a huge amount of value added for the masses. It just gives the so called social media experts something else to talk about.

    • Jay April 1, 2013 at 11:08 am #

      It’s hard to prove the value of one conversation over another, but easier reading is always appreciated.

  2. Therese April 1, 2013 at 1:35 pm #

    Agree. But I think customer service-driven businesses very much appreciate this feature. Your two points of why this makes sense are the same exact reasons why most businesses would love this. *just saying*

    • Jay April 1, 2013 at 1:40 pm #

      I agree, I just think it’s not as big of a deal as the social media bloggers will say it is.