Facebook is launching a new suite of tools that bring the Facebook social experience to any site on the web.
The company is releasing a set of products called Social Plugins, which any web publishers can drop into their website using one very simple line of code. These plug-ins will let visitors Like news stories, photos and so on. Once a user likes something, it instantly gets added to the appropriate section of their Facebook profile.
The plug-ins are part of a new Facebook initiative to make every website on the internet sharable across its network, something the company is calling the Open Graph.
The announcements were made by Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg and platform engineer Brett Taylor at the company's F8 developers conference taking place here Wednesday.
Facebook will roll out the Like buttons Wednesday morning, and Zuckerberg boldly estimates that within 24 hours, there will be one billion Like buttons across the web.
Facebook has often been branded as the next AOL, a website that basically recreates several experiences available on the open web chat, e-mail and link sharing behind a closed gate. But with Wednesdays Open Graph announcements, the company is giving website owners a bigger door into Facebook's closed system using simple HTML tools and by incorporating open standards into its authentication system.
Zuckerberg, speaking with his trademark brand of stiff, awkward enthusiasm, calls the new Open Graph initiative the most transformative thing weve ever done for the web.
A grand platitude, certainly, but one of the most transformative shifts in Facebook's policies, as it enables sites to more easily link up their content on the open web with the Facebook ecosystem and access its 400 million active users.
With these tools, any web page can become a Facebook page, Taylor says. If you don't like the way Facebook pages look, just make your own. Add the Like buttons and the Open Graph elements and you've got a page that's fully integrated into Facebook.
Central to the experience is the Like button. Websites can add them by dropping in an i-frame, and when a Facebook user clicks on it, its the same as them clicking on a Like button inside Facebook. Facebook knows who the person is, because it can now see a users logged-in state via a cookie.
This story appears courtesy of All About Jazz Publicity.
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