Facebook subscribe buttons have started to surface on Facebook. This is clearly a move that mimics Twitter, and Google+. That makes sense as the feature is actually useful and arguably “necessary” for Facebook if it wants to attract, or retain “star power” in its system. The truth is: most people won’t need or care to be a “broadcaster”, but “influential people” who have a large following in Twitter or Google+ will appreciate this new addition. Of course, their followers will probably welcome this Facebook upgrade.
How it works
Now, users can subscribe to the Facebook feeds of people that they are not “friends” with. However, each user can control if their feed is public or private. To allow subscriptions to your account, visit this page. For general help on this topic, go to this one.
If you just want to “follow” someone, check for the “subscribe” button on the top-right section of the person’s profile. Click on it, and select what type of content you want to follow. Overall, I think that this is a convenient way to follow hear what people have to say, without becoming their “friends”.
For example Vic Gundotra, a Google executive, seems popular on Facebook as the system recommended him to me. That’s partly how a very small number of people get a huge following pretty quickly.
It’s a good move from Facebook, even if it has been done under the pressure of Google+. At the moment, it looks like any user can enable Subscriptions to their account, although it may actually only appear in your profile in “a few days”.