Facebook has come under fire recently for its apparent “borrowing” (or all-out stealing) ideas from other social networks, with Google+ being a key player in the furore.
Auto-tagging is one such feature. Originally implemented in Google+, auto-tagging gives you a suggestion of who to tag whenever you upload photos – handy for some, nightmare for others, particularly if it’s automatically set to “on” (which it is with Facebook). Video Chat is another one, seen as a response to G+’s Hangout feature, as is instant commenting, where comments can be seen in real-time instead of users needing to refresh the page first.
Facebook has continued to steal ideas ever since, and it isn’t just from Google+ either. The much-publicised rollout of hashtags has put the social media world in a frenzy – once seen as the domain of social rival Twitter, Facebook has started to use the hashtag to make it easier for users to add context, track down relevant conversations and discover shared interests.
The social giant itself says it was a natural progression – given that hashtags have become so ingrained in pop culture and that people were manually creating them anyway, it’s only right they can now become clickable to give users another level of interaction.
Then there’s the change of “subscribers” to “followers”, complete with a Follow button that’s remarkably similar to Twitter’s, and let’s not forget the rumours that Facebook-owned Instagram is about to develop features similar to video sharing sensation Vine.
So what’s next?
Well, Google is currently looking to revive its social network for a new era having recently acquired social GPS app Waze, and it’ll be interesting to see what the response of the social media giant will be…