Now I bet you’re wondering “what does he mean return?”, but in Facebook’s early days they did indeed allow for Gifs to be posted on Facebook and retain their animation. This is way back when they were battling MySpace for Social Media supremacy. In the midst of this battle however Facebook decided to stop support for Gifs automatically playing on their website.
The reason for this being that MySpace had exploded into reams and reams of sparkly, low grade, clipart-esque gifs for absolutely anything. Personally I didn’t like them as they got so out of hand. I also think Facebook saw this coming and by the time MySpace was drowning in a sea of sparkly names and tinkerbells, Facebook retained it’s clean and “cool” image.
Thus, Facebook edged ahead in the war and the rest is history. But now it looks like Facebook is set to change that history, not, so that we can all have flaming versions of our names on our profile, but because the very nature of gifs has evolved. In the time of the Social Media wars, gifs were very small, often only consisting of a few kilobytes. Gifs these days are images that people use to display their emotions, feelings or thoughts by way of a short animation look.
And Facebook have teamed up with a company called Giphy, who provide us with the gifs that Facebook will support. N.B. Facebook isn’t adding native support for gifs, it will only display them if they come from Giphy. And even then it won’t play them automatically in your news feed, you’ll need to click on them and enter the “theatre” mode to view them. Much in the same way you would view a short video.
Have you tried this yet? Do you think this is a wise move for Facebook or not?
Blog Post by: Greg McVey