Last March, Facebook announced that they’d be making apps a “bigger part of Timeline” and that developers could create custom collections to help users express themselves. This past Friday, however, they did a 180 and pulled the ability for users to submit new collections; but, existing collections will still function.
Collections allowed Facebook users to show custom flair or actions such as the following example from the Green Bay Packers.
When a user participated, they would then display their collection next to the standard Open Graph elements on their Timeline:
Alan McConnell, Engineering Manager at Facebook, made the following comment on Open Graph collections in a bug chain on the Facebook Developers site:
“We designed collections to help people express what’s important to them on Timeline. However, after testing with users, we’ve found that few wanted to add custom app collections to their Timeline. Similarly, the traffic to apps who have incorporated custom collections has been limited. As a result, we are no longer accepting new collection submissions, although existing custom collections will continue to function.”
So far in 2014, we’ve seen the disappearance of Sponsored Stories and now the non-paid user activity through Open Graph apps appears to be on the way out. This is a rather surprising change as Open Graph stories for apps have only been available for 10 months. Developers that we’ve spoke to were surprised about the change as they’d seen the inverse of what Facebook had claimed and that collections actually drove a large portion of overall app impressions.