Facebook internal hackathon reveals push for LinkedIn-style profile tags

(c)iStock.com/Anatolii Babii

Facebook has confirmed it is testing a new ‘profile tags’ feature following an internal hackathon examining new features for the social network.

If you think this sounds a little familiar, then the feature is not too dissimilar to LinkedIn’s skills and endorsements profile section. As reported by The Verge, friends will be able to add tags about each other describing personalities which can either be approved or rejected – presumably so the system cannot be abused. The tags will be displayed in descending order based on how many likes each receives.

When LinkedIn originally rolled out its endorsements in 2012, the move was widely criticised. The one-click, convenient way of endorsing contacts, some of whom you may not have even met, was seen as a downgrade on the more time-consuming reference-based endorsement.

As Peter Cochrane wrote for Tech Republic at the time: “So far I look like a really good egg and a sure-fire bet for someone looking to hire me, but what does it really mean?” adding “I detect a large number of people needing to get endorsed.”

For a less business-oriented approach, profile tags on Facebook may well work. In a statement to The Verge, Facebook said: “Profile tags are a creative tool that lets you and your friends add tags to your profile to highlight the things that describe you and what you’re into.” The social behemoth did not comment on whether it was going to be rolled out generally, with tests currently only taking place in New Zealand.

Earlier this week, Facebook employees took part in a hackathon at Menlo Park focusing on creating a new level for Nintendo’s upcoming Super Mario Maker game. The winning level will be available on the game when it launches on September 11. You can take a look at photos from the event here.

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