Today, the social network announced that it will target a niche audience with its Mentions mobile app. As if famous people weren’t members of plenty of exclusive clubs, now they also have a private social network.
To make sure that this app is furthermore niched, Facebook only made Mentions available for iOS users. An Android equivalent will surely be launched further down the road, but for the moment the social network doesn’t seem to think that this audience is worth the attention.
The name of the app is rather straight-forward, in that the rich and the famous can see when the others are mentioning them. That should help celebrities interact better with the plebs, and from a certain point of view, it could help a lot with the public relations of the famous. Think of it as an alternative to Google Alerts, but one that’s specifically tailored for this social network.
Notifications no longer focus on news, but on direct interactions. In the above example, Dom Lane stated that while Whoopi Goldberg is a cool person, the movies she starred in are anything but cool. With the help of the Facebook Mentions app, Goldberg caught wind of that and whooped Lane’s behind.
I would’ve said that the goal of Facebook’s new iOS app is to censor people saying bad things about celebrities, but Goldberg emphasized that Lane is entitled to his own opinion. After all, it’s a matter of taste if someone likes an actress in particular, or a famous person, in general.
Since the app is only available to celebrities, there’ll definitely be a lot of people trying to impersonate famous people. Unfortunately for the impersonators, Facebook will make sure that only the target audience can use the app by providing access exclusively to Verified accounts.
I wouldn’t say that Facebook Mentions is a terribly original app, but I’ll admit that it has some functionality, and it could prove useful for the few ones that are allowed to use it. I just wonder when will Facebook consider me famous enough to provide me access to the app. At the moment, I’m a bit on the antisocial side of things, as any geek who respects himself should be. I’m kidding! Or am I?
Be social! Follow Walyou on Facebook and Twitter, and read more related stories about how Virgin America targeted business travelers with an in-flight social network, and these Internet-connected light fixtures that reinvent physical social networking.