“Whatever you can do I can do better,” says Facebook

Back in August, Facebook released its very own live streaming feature that mimicked those of Periscope and Meerkat. The feature was first released to celebrities with large followings to give the feature some popularity while others didn’t have the option of using it yet. It was a very clever strategy to build a large amount of content that would be exposed to a lot of people.


Earlier this week Facebook rolled out a feature for the Live Streaming to try and separate itself from the other services. It has added Live for groups/events and live reactions and filters. The new Live for Groups/Events feature is something that I think would be dope. It allows you to stream to certain groups or pages that you are in. For example, if I wanted to stream practice of the dance team that I am currently on I would be able to live stream it from the Facebook group that the past and current members are a part of. This is different from Periscope because anyone can join a chat room or lobby and tune in. In this case it would only be the people that are part of this group.

Again similar to Periscope but better are the reactions. Periscope just has a measly set of hearts that you can either approve or show love to whomever channel you are streaming. But on the Facebook live stream you can use the assortment of reactions that they now provide across the platform.


Facebook Reactions in Live Streaming


Periscopes Hearts

In addition t the ‘reactions’ you also have the ability to have Live Filters, which enable you the ability to draw and add, some flare to your stream. Sounds a lotfb2 like Snapchat features. Again, seems like Facebook is trying to take all of the features from other platforms in which it doesn’t own and make it better. Being a very loyal Snapchat user all I can do is roll my eyes.


The big headliner of this update is the ‘Discovery’ tab. Wait… Discovery? Did I mention that Facebook was just taking features from other platforms and trying to make them better? Anyway, so similar to the Snapchat Discover interface this new tab will highlight live video that people around the world are talking about. This will include matters that have the most significance to you. If you want to check out news that is going on around the world you can just go to the Facebook Live Map Tool al la Periscope.

With this new tab people believe that this is the final piece that will push Facebook’s live streaming to the next level. With the large name publisher and celebrities creating content on a regular basis this feature has few doubters of it catching popularity.

With the video metrics for the live content in place, I can only imagine how businesses and advertisers will look to get in on this opportunity. However, the organic nature of the streaming takes away the need for advertisements. But, I’m sure they will find a way.


  1. Great post. I wonder if Facebook is starting to become a master-of-none rather than a jack-of-all-trades. My view is that you should establish your niche and do the best you can. Expanding into new areas, while obviously a way to promote growth, could stagger their core business. Love the line at the end.

  2. Really interesting post! Sometimes big and well established companies try to mimic existing methods, app’s, services and completely fail, or success if well implemented. An example that I can imagine that implies Facebook’s SLINGSHOT, that was expected to be the competitor of snapchat. Periscope it’s not really well established, (at least, I didn’t know it before this class). So who knows where this can get! Maybe a way to introduce VR to social media sometime in the future? We will see!

  3. Interesting post, and great overview of the new features and how they compare to those of competitors. I think your headline says it all– much of what Facebook has been doing recently seems like it’s in direct response to Snapchat. I think it’s pretty obvious that they see Snapchat as a serious threat, and it’s certainly an anomaly to see them be second to market in popular communication innovations like real-time content and fun features like face swapping and filters. I really liked your example use case of live streaming a dance practice to current and past members of your team. I think that’s one area in which Facebook has an advantage over Snapchat and Periscope– our social networks are way more defined and compartmentalized on Facebook.

  4. This was a thoughtful post about different features/products being bundled together by major players in the social media space. I think this not only says a lot about business strategy in terms of meeting consumer demand, but it also shows how important tech defensibility is in today’s business landscape. When you have a company that is strong enough to attract the best developers, nothing is impossible to build. Therefore, you can’t win on a feature alone. There has to be more, which is what the companies mentioned in your post are trying to create. Great thought provoking post!

  5. Great post! I liked your description of Facebook’s new feature and your title. I appreciate the explanation because it’s definitely difficult keeping track of the new updates and changes on all these social media platforms. I agree with the other commenters that perhaps Facebook is trying to do too much at once – but at the same time they have the ability to do so. I don’t know if i’ll be using the live streaming for groups anytime soon, but I suppose we’ll have to give it time to see if it takes off. Also enjoyed the pictures and visuals of the feature on mobile.

  6. If Facebook can’t beat them, they just buy them. Its a pretty good strategy, and I actually comment FB for remaining as attentive to competing features/ business models and seeking to copy them when they get popular enough. I think it has always been their key to staying on top.

  7. yifanhong04233 · ·

    For Facebook, the problem is that they are pretty dominant in Western countries but not in China, which has 1.4 billion people. If Facebook can have acess in China, it will be a unstoppable force in this century. Another fact is that, I happen to read that Facebook just add the scanning feature to add friends–which has been adopped by other social media apps, such as Wechat and Snapchat, long time ago. It seems that FB has been so focused on the big picture (business strategies) that it neglects some small details. But I am sure FB will be better in the foreseeable future.

  8. willybbolton · ·

    I enjoyed this post. Facebook definitely seems to have done a good job with Live streaming, but I think that Periscope has the First mover advantage. Also, being connected to twitter helps Periscope because users actually get notified every time that someone they follow on twitter goes live on periscope. Time will tell, but I think Periscope will last.

  9. Interesting- Personally, I enjoy having one platform, so I like to use all of the functionality it one platform if I want to or if I have it. For me, keeping up with multiple platforms is a pain for the most part and depending on the type of content shared, I don’t even care to, so I like the integration.

  10. I have mad respect for facebook. I think they really are the best in the game, and they will stay on top of it. I know fully committing to FB will make the experience better, but i am resisting full commitment for one reason ….. i dont want to be a “facebook shark” that is all over the site. i think keeping a healthy distance will be best for anyone, who really cares whats on my mind anyways ?….

  11. This is a great post. This looks like an exciting new feature that Facebook is coming out with. It won’t change our lives that much since Snapchat already exists but it will be more convenient to have the feature within Facebook itself as opposed to in another app. Although I don’t think it will bring younger kids who are in high school to Facebook because the brand is still associated with an older generation. High school kids and those who are younger will probably still use Snapchat.

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