facebook: corporate citizenship

Good corporate citizenship entails, doing what’s right for the customers/users even if it may mean a slight dent in potential profits. I’ve seen several companies that commit their profit (salesforce.com commits 1% to the salesforce foundation) or invest in community growth through employees (Microsoft is a phenomenal example) or just do the right thing for the customer.

I’m thankful and in awe of facebook for implementing a very simple feature (displaying the full text of messages in email.) Some of my friends have replaced email with facebook messages as their primary form of communication with me. This compelled me to log into facebook multiple times every day to read their message (assuming that there could be some important message). Facebook used to send me a notification that I’ve received a new message but forced me to log into facebook to read the message. That was annoying.

Yesterday, they made a slight change to also display the message body in the email and that has saved me a lot of time. It is commendable to see that facebook is doing so, even after knowing that they’ll be losing pageviews and potential advertisements.

Thank you facebook.

Some counterpoints:

  • Facebook may have implemented it for positive PR after the beacon debacle (still, it is a good thing.)
  • Facebook still requires me to log in, if I want to reply to the message (clever)!!
  • Message-viewing related pageviews may not be significant in grander scheme of things(pragmatic!!)

Net net, facebook is showing signs of a good corporate citizen.

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