Facebook Gives Resharing a Boost with New Via Attribution Feature

Facebook tweaked the “Share” button for shared items over the weekend to make the feature more social.

When you click to “Share” a video, link, or any other content from one of your friends or Pages you’re a fan of, you’ll now see a line of text that says “via [your friend’s/the Page’s name].” If you choose to reshare the item, it will appear on your stream, and in your friends’ News Feeds. The reshared item includes a mention and link to the profile of the person you shared the item from, although you can remove their name in the reshare window if you want.

This feature is conceptually similar to how Twitter users retweet shared stories, in that the company is trying to make it easier for users to share more of each other’s content. However, while retweeting is a big part of Twitter user behavior, it hasn’t gotten so big on Facebook.

Facebook has already been working on a related effort to make, well, publishing more social. Last fall, it introduced a way to tag and link users in a post with the @ feature, like how you can tag friends on Twitter — except when you typed in @ on Facebook, you got a drop-down menu with a choice to choose people’s Facebook names.

While the interface is arguably more elegant than Twitter’s, especially for new users unfamiliar with, the feature hasn’t yet caught on that widely, that we’ve seen. The reshare button iterates on the idea of retweeting, and it also looks cleaner — we’ll see if it catches on, and helps spur adoption of @ tagging on Facebook.

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