Facebook's Version Of @ Replies: Tagging

Today Facebook has announced the ability to tag users within status updates and posts. In order to tag your friends in feed updates you simply use the “@” sign and begin typing a user’s name. As you type, their name will be displayed below the publisher. Those messages will then be posted to a user’s wall as though you posted it. While Facebook has not stated that usernames can be substituted in this area, my assumption is that they soon will.

For too long Facebook users have not been able to associate updates with their friends but over the coming weeks they will be able to as Facebook rolls out this new feature. Users will also be able to remove tags of themselves from updates, something that Twitter does not enable. This new feature is of major significance as it closes the loop of communication, enabling users to associate just about any form of content with their friends.

While not yet available, users will soon be able to tag groups, events, applications, and Pages. This form of association information is significant and will further enable users to communicate clearly with each other. Many have wondered how long Facebook would wait to implement this feature but as of today it is now being rolled out. The implementation of this new feature also emphasizes Facebook’s emphasis on structured data.

Information attributed to an individual user helps us paint a picture of that individual’s personality as well as their general habits. In addition to giving Facebook ad developers greater access to understanding a user, it also is extremely useful for producing more effective communication. Didn’t see that your friend wrote about you in a recent status update? You won’t have to worry anymore now that they’ll tag you in it.

We have not been included in the first version of users to test out the new forum of tagging so let us know if you’ve used it already. Also, do you think this will have a significant impact on Twitter?