Facebook continues to go through the most contentious time in its history, as it has to contend with numerous consequences of data protection, misinformation and false news, as well as greater impact on the caustic role of the social network in democratic societies.
But as young users abandon the platform for hippier Instagram, and as the site's reputation continues to grow, one key feature has remained absolute: events. Facebook is still the best place to organize a calendar of social events, birthdays, concerts and other real meetups thanks to the social graphs on Facebook and the fact that companies and promoters still largely treat it as an outstanding advertising platform. For an older user like me, the event-related features are the reason why I still use Facebook outside of Messenger.
So it makes sense that Facebook turns to events as the next destination for its product Stories. The company said today that it is planned to test a way of "sharing the events you are interested in and voting with friends with the IRL". The test will take place in the US, Brazil and Mexico and should be available to mobile users for both iOS and Android.
Unlike your standard story feature, which Facebook originally used for Instagram to make it more popular, this particular implementation is designed to share the details of an event with your friends. In this way, you can see who wants to come to an upcoming show or other activity with a corresponding event page. The stories are delivered with flip-up stickers to reveal details of the event, and friends can switch to "event history" as "interested" or "walking." There is also a link to the integrated event page and a way to start a group chat with Messenger with friends who have responded.
To be fair, as uninteresting as stories outside of Instagram can be, this is actually a very smart strategy that remixes the traditional format and makes something really useful out of it. The theme, of course, convinces your friends to review Facebook stories that are of secondary importance to most people after their Instagram or Snap story, or are not used at all. (Inexplicably, Facebook says its Stories products for the main Facebook and Messenger app together have 300 million users per day, but none of my friends seem to use it.) But I could see that this is one of the more successful attempts Facebook is being used during its seemingly never-ending quest to enable stories in the mobile home application.