Twitter has been the top destination for those looking for real-time discussions for quite some time through trending topics. Facebook, however, is hoping to give the microblogging platform a run for its money with their own version of trending topics.
The social network on Wednesday launched a trial for their rendition of trending topics with a small percentage of Facebook users. In a message confirming the feature, Facebook said trending topics are currently being limited to US-based users using the mobile version of the site as it is still in the very early stages of development.
What those mobile users will see is a banner atop their News Feed that will highlight the people and subject matter that Facebook users are talking about the most. Tapping the banner will reveal what their friends are saying about the topic in addition to opinions and feedback from other users they don’t know.
In other words, Facebook’s trending topics essentially mirror what Twitter has been doing both in function and purpose. That’s not a bad thing, either. As we learned with MySpace, if you aren’t keeping up with the winds of change, you’ll soon be forgotten about.
Along those same lines, we are also reminded by Facebook executive Justin Osofsky that the company isn’t trying to move away from their original mission of connecting users with people they know.
Word of the new feature comes just days after Facebook implemented Story Bumping and secure browser connections by default. The company once again borrowed from Twitter back in June when they rolled out official support for hashtags – another Twitter staple.