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Facebook unveils new version of Open Graph

With Ticker, Facebook users will be able to experience "frictionless experiences," "real-time serendipity," and the ability to find new patterns and activity, says CEO Mark Zuckerberg.

Mark Zuckerberg introduces the Facebook Ticker and its link to Spotify today at F8.
Mark Zuckerberg introduces the Facebook Ticker and its link to Spotify today at F8. James Martin/CNET

SAN FRANCISCO--After unveiling Timeline at F8 this morning, Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg announced Ticker, a part of the next version of the social network's Open Graph.

Last year, Zuckerberg said, Facebook rolled out Open Graph, a map of all of a user's connections in the world, and made it so users can connect to anything they want in any way they want. But now with the next Open Graph, he said, users will also be able to connect to an order of magnitude more things than ever before using what he called Ticker, a way to express "lightweight" actions, thoughts, and other things anytime they want.

When a user shares a post normally, it goes into their news feed. But when that user adds activity through Open Graph, it will go into the Ticker and into the Timeline, but not into the news feed unless that's what's desired. It's a lightweight stream of everything going on around you, Zuckerberg said, and it's the first time Facebook has enabled sharing activities other than simply "liking" something, such as listening to a song, watching a movie, reading a book, or even cooking a meal.

And Zuckerberg said that he expects this will enable people to create "a completely new class of social apps than what was ever possible before," including those about music, movies, TV, books, and any media as well as lifestyle apps that let users express all kinds of things about their lives: their runs, their naps, their moods, and much more.

All told, the new feature will allow "frictionless experiences," "real-time serendipity," and finding patterns and activity, Zuckerberg said.

Clearly, Facebook designed the new Open Graph with the intention of allowing people to easily access all kinds of media content from a wide range of publishers. That includes music, movies, TV, news, and games. On stage, Zuckerberg and guest speakers including Spotify founder Daniel Ek and Netflix CEO Reed Hastings talked about how music and video content can be easily discovered, and Zuckerberg talked about how dozens of partners will be making news stories available through Open Graph. In addition, many game publishers will allow people to get easy and streamlined access to the leading type of Facebook content.

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