Facebook to inundate Ticker with "Sponsored Stories"

Posted by Raven Lovecraft

Deep down, we all knew it was only a matter of time.

Your Facebook Ticker, which is supposed to provide a quick snapshot of only the things that are important and relevant to you, will soon become littered with advertisements.

In a statement quoted by Mashable, Facebook confirmed, "Sponsored Stories now appear in Ticker on the home page. Sponsored Stories are an extension of News Feed, so we think it’s natural that they appear in Ticker."

The Ticker hasn't exactly gotten off to a great start. Its original purpose was to provide quick glimpses of friend activity, like when someone accepted a new friend or liked someone else's status.

But Facebook has been messing with it from day one, probably because most of those mundane updates aren't super exciting or noteworthy. As a result, a lot of users have cast it aside.

For the marketing team at Facebook, the answer to this problem wasn't "how can we make the Ticker more relevant?" Instead, they decided this meant "since people don't care about what shows up in the Ticker, let's use it as a new advertising space."

Of course, "sponsored" messages are nothing new and probably shouldn't surprise anyone. Twitter has been offering paid Tweets for quite some time now, along with other social platforms like Digg.

So if you didn't think there was enough ad content on Facebook already, this one's for you.