First Facebook added hashtag capabilities to posts, a feature started by Twitter and long absent from Facebook’s network. Then, a week ago, Facebook announced embedding capabilities for public posts, a feature reminiscent of Twitter’s “Embed Tweet” function. And now, this? Facebook is taking yet another leaf from Twitter’s book by introducing a Trending Topics feature, according to AllThingsD.
If the rumor is accurate, Facebook will begin promoting “trending topics” in some users’ mobile News Feeds starting today. Trending topics have long had their place in the left-hand column of Twitter’s homepage, where hashtags rising in popularity go on display. Facebook’s Trending Topics, though, will function a little differently from Twitter’s; rather than use hashtags as indicators of popularity, Facebook’s Trending Topics will be based on how heavily topics are being discussed by both your friends and people on the network as a whole.
Unlike on Twitter, Trending Topics on Facebook will display directly within the News Feed rather than in a separate column. In the screenshot above, provided by AllThingsD, you can see a block of text promoting Shark Week, Jeff Bezos, and Vince Young as Trending Topics. Clicking on a topic brings you to a topic page that links to a related news article, shows you what some of your friends are saying about the topic, and displays comments and posts from people you don’t know.
Could Trending Topics have anything to do with Facebook’s rumored “Reader” service? This remains to be seen, but both alleged services point to Facebook positioning itself as a popular source of news content. Whatever makes people spend more time browsing their News Feeds, right?
Have you seen Trending Topics in your News Feed Yet? Share your experience with us in the comments section!