We mentioned a couple of weeks ago that this was coming…moments ago Facebook removed the restrictions on registration and anyone can now become a member by joining a geographic network.
They’ve also anticipated backlash from existing users who liked Facebook just fine as an exclusive club, thank you very much. New privacy controls were put in place in the last week to give users additional say over who can find and interact with them. Specific new privacy features include:
* Block other users in specific networks from searching for his or her name.
* Prevent people in those networks from messaging, poking and adding him or her as a friend.
* Control whether his or her profile picture shows up in search results.
Expect lots of heated debate over this move. And also expect exponential growth in Facebook’s usage by tens of millions of new users.
I joined Facebook recently (through a TechCrunch network) and am a member of the Silicon Valley network as well. Please feel free to add me as a friend.
Our previous coverage of Facebook is here.