CNN is pushing hard on their partnership with Facebook this morning. For the Obama inauguration, the two have paired up to allow users to watch the presidential inauguration live stream from CNN, while simultaneously monitoring the Facebook status updates of their friends, and the public. Users can even respond to friends status updates. This is definitely feeling a lot like the use structure of Twitter, allowing users to post in real time, monitor a feed of just users updates, and most importantly, respond directly. Facebook still hasn’t turned on “@” responses, instead using a slightly more organized threaded comment format.
CNN is pushing hard on this, going as far as mentioning it live on the air multiple times, and showing live screenshots of the live inauguration stream window. I was a bit afraid that if they kept that screenshot up there on their live feed showing a window of their live feed, they would create that infinite mirror effect…
**Update – Now that the day is done, the inaguration complete, how did the partnership go? I think it went quite well, personally. I had the video + Facebook status window up on my screen for the better part of the day, and really enjoyed seeing the stream of updates from my friends. It was key that users were allowed to comment on friends statuses, and that the comments appeared and updated in real time. There were actually a few threads I got into that quicly racked up 10+ responses. Additionally, the option of seeing a selection of the public feed was a great idea. I only had one suggestion for the public feed. I though that, while informative and interesting, the public feed of statuses was a little bit without much context – seemingly random users from the Facebook community. Obvious privacy concerns aside, I think it would have been a great idea to allow users to select what other data should be appended to each community user’s nametag in the stream – not all data, but perhaps the option to add location or hometown, age, and perhaps political affiliation? Having basic data about a user could help put their status updates into context – especially for a political event.
Quick update – The NBA is getting in on the Facebook integration action too, streaming the NBA All-Star game live on Facebook.