I just came to the realization that Facebook is pushing lighter versions of web2.0 technologies from across the web onto its users. Kinda cool. They've done something that most web2.0 apps havn't been able to do, attract main stream users and get those users to participate.
News feeds are the obvious example, but they also have the microblogging like status updates (similar to twitter), structured content posting for links, photos, and video (similar to tumblr), and comment email notification (similar to disqus).
I guess, this isn't a major realization, because Facebook was very close to the cutting edge of many of these technologies. But what drives me crazy is they've really toned down some great concepts for the masses, and I'm left dealing with bad closed-community approximations of many of my favorite web technologies.
Lets look at some specifics:
1) They take my beautiful posterous blog, and make it really ugly. I'm feeding it into the notes section via RSS, but it leaves out images and the format is pretty ugly.
2) I can't reply or "@" people's status updates, so its not nearly as engaging as twitter.
3) Though, they've gotten better about passing comments and direct messages (or facebook mail) out to your email, their main objective is trying to get you to log back on to their site to drive page views. I might spend just as much or more time there if the conversations where more engaging, and I didn't have to login each time to do it.
4) The news feed isn't very useful. I'm sure theres interesting information in my friends feed, but I'm not getting to it. I know they have some serious filters, but that doesn't seem to get me more of what I want. I suspect its the lack of quantity, because you can only get one page worth, and not enough quality. I'd also like to get these in an RSS feed. Its got ads in it, so I don't see why I should have to log in to see it.
5) Friending/following. People don't manage their facebook friends like they do twitter friends. I get a lot of useless news feed updates because of people I don't really care to get updates on, and I have so many friends now its tough to manage. Maybe I'll do a great purging of friends!
At the same time Facebook is kind of my addressbook/CRM to keep track of all the people I know, so there are people I want to keep as friends, but don't want to share as much information with and don't want to receive as many updates from.
6) Micro-publishing structured content. Just like on twitter you can post videos, pictures, text, and links. Unlike twitter, the UI is too structured, and it ends up not being as engaging. That being said, I've noticed an increase in the past few months of my friends posting content, and other people commenting.
Anyway, props to facebook for getting non techies to do this stuff! Hope the rest of these webapps can catch up and latch on to the mainstream.