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The BBC is about to get very social

Posted by Danny Whatmough on 30th September 2009

It seems that the BBC website is about to get a makeover that will integrate ‘social media’ to a much greater extent.

I think most people generally acknowledge that social media isn’t just a passing fad and that it’s here to stay, but further integration in one of the UK’s biggest and most visited websites will surely take adoption to new levels.

And to be honest, I’m surprised that it has taken the BBC so long to make this move. It’s not just the BBC either. Other major media websites have been slow to adopt social elements on their sites and I’m not quite sure why.

Even really simple elements are either missing or are cumbersome. Try tweeting about an article or sharing content on Facebook directly from a website – it’s really hard to do, and this makes no sense. [Brand Republic is one of my real bugbears – there is no option to tweet an article, no RSS feed and the URLs are ridiculously long!]

Surely the benefits of social media are clear – just ask a site like Mashable or Econsultancy. And whilst these sites are clearly ahead of the curve in terms of user adoption, the Facebook generation is well and truly mainstream.

Harnessing this ‘social power’ is the challenge for the BBC and its competitors. And its competitors better watch out, because it sounds as though the new site developments could be yet another game changer.

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