There's a bar in Stockton, California called "Finnegan's Irish Pub & Restaurant" that has taken a pretty unique approach to a previous problem with a rowdy clientele.
To gain admission to the bar after 9pm, you have to be 'friends' with the bar on Facebook. The owner, Tony, has personally screened all the bar's Facebook friends, eliminating the troublemakers and retaining just the customers that he thinks are true friend's of the bar. The guest list at the door, is simply an iPad with the bar's Facebook account open.
A pretty extreme, real world example but it illustrates one point - with over a billion members, no matter what any of us think, Facebook is becoming more and more a part of daily life beyond just us posting status updates.
We've blogged before about online identity and social sign-on and why its becoming a standard best practice on all modern websites and platforms. Clearly Facebook, with their huge number of existing customer profiles are a huge part of this trend. In fact they're build out a specific series of software tools to facilitate the easy integration of social sign-on. These tools are called Facebook Login (formally known as Facebook Connect)
In theory, Facebook Login should be a no-brainer. The internet needs a more structured way to login to sites and eliminate account creation and password fatigue. Facebook has over a billion members, with a very structured data set that evolves so that's a pretty good place to start. 81 of the top 100 grossing iOS apps and 62 of the top 100 grossing android apps already use Facebook Login.
However, one of the biggest concerns by Facebook users has always been based around the permissions that they give to third parties by using Facebook Login. There's a huge concern that by opting in to give these third party permissions that the users are opening themselves up to spam posts on their Facebook walls or worse still embarrassing revelations about their personal habits and tastes. And the simple fact is, yes, they are.
This week Facebook changed all that by releasing a updating set of rules for developers around the area of Facebook Login. With this new update, Facebook is requiring developers to separate sharing requests from core Facebook Login activities. So users can, say, sign up for a music service without worrying that all of their Facebook contacts will see they’ve listened to One Direction, 17 times in the past week. You can read the full announcement here.
In one swift move, Facebook have created an environment where over time their users can now be far more comfortable using Facebook Login as a way of signing up to services and as a general way of identifying themselves online, while now having much tighter control over who can post to their Facebook wall. They've listened to their users and eliminated one of the key roadblock to the adoption of Facebook Login as a key driver of social sign-on.
Over 850+ Million new user requests per month are processed using Facebook Login and this is set to rise dramatically, now that users have an extra assurance that their secret boyband addiction won't be exposed to the world.
Things are about to get very interesting.