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Much has been made recently about the plethora of changes that Facebook announced last week, all of which surround the concept of the universal like button. If you’re unsure of what I’m referring to you’ve come to the right place. We break it all down below and give our thoughts on how these changes will affect everyone involved.

What You Need to Know About Facebook’s “Like” Button

1.    A page for a business, organization, figure, etc. is no longer a “Fan” page. Instead of becoming a “fan” of one of these, you will simply click a button to “like” it. Facebook developers have stated that “liking” a company or brand is easier and more relatable for consumers than being a “fan”. The change seems simple, but in reality this will have serious implications for marketers of brands who have a page and promote their page. The question now becomes, if we are no longer “fans” of a company, then what are we? Likers? Followers? And what are you asking consumers to do if you’re not asking them to “become a fan”? “Like” us? It will be interesting to see how marketers adapt their current Facebook strategy to this change. There is another reason for this change from “fan” to “like” besides the one stated earlier, which leads us to…

2.    Facebook will now suggest pages for you to “like”. Before, only your friends could suggest pages for you. Now, Facebook will take the information from your profile, including your interests, activities, current city, hometown, etc. and suggest pages that they think you would like based on that. You will have an option to automatically “like” every page Facebook suggests or go through each page and decide for yourself. But that’s not all. Once you have selected the pages you ‘like”, this will be the information in your profile. You interests, activities, and education areas will now consist of links to these various pages, and if you want to write about yourself in your own words, you will use the “bio” section to do so.

3.    The third and most controversial of the major changes is absolutely mind-blowing. Facebook is beginning its journey to co-opt the entire web. What you used to only be able to do on Facebook.com will soon be available on many other websites in an attempt to encourage more social interaction. The first step is the universal like button. You will now be able to incorporate the use of the “like” button on web pages such as Pandora, IMBD and Yelp. For instance, let’s say you hear a song you really like on Pandora or a movie you really like on IMBD. You will now have the option to “like” that song or movie right from those pages. This information will get filtered back to your Facebook profile and will be displayed for all of your friends to see. You’ll also have the option to see what your friends like. Maybe you’re looking for a new restaurant on Yelp. You can see the list of restaurants your friends have liked which might influence your decision.

These are the first steps in Facebook’s attempt to know everything about you and then some. The information they receive will no doubt be invaluable as they continue to evolve. What do you think of the changes?