Facebook decides 'follow' sounds better than 'subscribe'

The social network makes a wording tweak across the network in what sure seems like a nod to Twitter.

Facebook has decided to do away with the word "subscribe" and replace it with "follow." The reason? Apparently people were confused by what the "subscribe" button meant.

Stealing a page -- or rather, a word -- from Twitter? Perhaps. But Facebook isn't talking about that, naturally. Instead, in a statement, the company said that it's making the change across the site because "we found as a term it resonates better with people on the service." Which means, of course, that Facebook thinks "follow" will lead to more...subscribers.

Facebook launched the subscribe feature just over a year ago so that users could receive updates from people on Facebook that they're not friends with. The feature will still work the same, according to Facebook. It'll just have a new name.

It seems the change is still rolling out. For now, for instance, Mark Zuckerberg still has 16 million "subscribers."

About the author

Paul Sloan is editor in chief of CNET News. Before joining CNET, he had been a San Francisco-based correspondent for Fortune magazine, an editor at large for Business 2.0 magazine, and a senior producer for CNN. When his fingers aren't on a keyboard, they're usually on a guitar. Email him here.

 

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