Facebook rolls out feature that shares who has read your update

Starting yesterday, Facebook began to roll out a feature that will show users who has viewed each post in a group, including the date and time at which it was viewed.

Touted as a way to ensure your update is being read by those who need to see it, this change could be a sign of future changes to come. While some fear-mongerers are citing this change as proof that Facebook will one day adapt this feature to include posts beyond those in voluntary, membership-only groups, it’s doubtful that the site would bite the hand that feeds. However, given that the site recently implemented a feature that shows when a chat message has been “seen”, could it be a real possibility?

The free-f0r-all, voyeuristic nature of Facebook users would likely work against the site should they try to implement a feature that would provide information about who has seen what. However, I wouldn’t discredit the notion that this could be a move towards what LinkedIn already offers. LinkedIn has a feature that shows a user who has viewed their profile, with users able to opt-in to varying levels of self-identification and able to purchase the ability to see full information on who these profile-viewers are. It has useful applications – users can see when a recruiter has viewed their profile or, more interestingly, an ex lover.

This new feature for groups could be foreshadowing for future at-large Facebook features or it may simply be what it is at face value – a way to ensure people have seen the information you intended them to see. What do you think?