Upgrade Your Profile with New Facebook Profile Pages

Tomorrow, Facebook will officially announce a redesign of profile pages, and Mark Zuckerberg will offer a “sneak peak” of these pages on 60 Minutes tonight. However, if you can’t wait, you can get these new Facebook Profile Pages by going to http://www.facebook.com/about/profile/ and clicking on the green button at the top right of the page, “Get The New Profile.”

Here’s What You Can Expect

The new profile page summarizes your employment, education, residence, hometown, relationship status, and birthday in a “header,” which ends up looking a little ridiculous if you’ve made a joke out of any one of those entry fields. (For example, I made a bit of a mockery out of my college experience, quoting an Asher Roth song where my field of study should have been. This doesn’t translate very well into the redesigned Facebook page.) Below this header are recent photos you’ve been tagged in…which is, in consideration, a lot like what MySpace did after their major redesign.

Other new major profile page features include “featured relationship lists” along the left side of your profile, which default to 10 randomly selected friends, the person you are in a relationship with, as well as your entire family. You can also create a custom list here by clicking on the pencil that appears when you over over the title of any of these lists. Along the right side of your profile are your active pokes, (I know – I thought these were dead, too,) and a long list of targeted advertisements. Another big change is that the “about” box below the profile picture, where you could formerly enter random, vague, or elusive text, has been removed.

While the wall page does not seem to have any major modifications, the “Info” page is a bit more structured, with the ability for your employers and school to add images to their profiles, and all of your interests converted to images. The page doesn’t have any other new features, but does look more organized. The Photo page has also been redesigned, allowing you to see both albums and the entirety of your photos on the same page.

The new profile page redesign seems to recreate profiles as more informative for the end-user; your friends. Since the top and sides stay static as you browse each section of a profile, users’ basic information and network remains visible throughout your own stalking browsing experience. This redesign, however, does seem to take some control out of the individual to show their personality through their profile- the new design makes adding anything other than strict facts into your profile almost awkward, and the inclusion of random pictures in the header could lead to users more strongly considering what pictures they even post on Facebook altogether. The good thing, for now, is that Facebook appears to be letting users opt-in to these new pages, rather than forcing users to upgrade immediately.

Have you switched to the new profile pages on Facebook yet? Do you like the new changes, or do you think the redesign is just another unnecessary feature for Facebook?

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Kelly Clay, author of Blog Without Boundaries, is a freelance writer and lifestyle advisor.