From the early days of Facebook there’s been one feature that’s held constant; Facebook users are required to have a strong identity, meaning they’re accounts are linked to data that verifies their identity in real life. Along with identity, Facebook is also tied to the idea of permanence, in that everything you post there will be stored and displayed indefinitely.
With the recent popularity of apps like SnapChat, where posts disappear within seconds of being viewed, may be causing Facebook to change it’s ideas on identity and anonymity within the system. In fact, startups focusing on ephemerality and anonymity are flourishing.
Here’s a summary of the recent announcements that an anonymous Facebook experience is on the way:
- Facebook pioneered the concept of identity online by requiring users to register with a valid university email account early on.
- In it’s current state, Facebook promotes strong identity and permanence, ie. everyone knows who you are and your posts remain online, archived forever.
- New startups like SnapChat are embracing anonymity and ephemerality, and are thriving.
- Facebook recently turned 10 years old, and is looking at current trends to stay ahead of emerging startups.
- A future anonymous Facebook is very likely, based on comments by Facebook’s CEO and Founder, Mark Zuckerberg.