Facebook Email Needs to Grow Up

There was a time when people only used Facebook email for informal, personal communications; voices from the past looking to catch up, or casual connections that were anything but urgent.

As folks have begun to get more contacts on Facebook, and use it for more of their daily business communications, the walled-garden approach is no longer functional.

Facebook needs to open up its messaging system to POP and IMAP access, allow forwarding to external accounts, and recognize their role as a legitimate email provider.  While I loathe having to have yet another email account to manage, if I could access it via IMAP or forwarding, I could at least manage it. As it stands today, it is really not manageable; in fact the inability for me to archive the data along with my other email communications makes it a liability and something to avoid.

As it is now, Facebook email is actually creating more problems than it solves, and I expect that there will be a backlash against it unless they take ownership of this growing problem. Facebook, are you listening?


#1 Capri on 11.08.08 at 11:00 pm

I’d like it if Facebook email “grew up” so that FB wouldn’t limit messages and delete or block access to accounts who’ve used it too much for their liking. They claim their email is not a method for chatting back and forth, FB chat is for that. But honestly, who uses FB chat anyway? The whole point of FB email is that people should leave and receive messages back and forth without limits, especially if they’re making plans for events, business, whatever. Because most often when you get on Facebook, your friends aren’t on at the same time, or if they are, they’re doing something else, so disturbing them with a chat request does little more than interupt what they are doing, and what are the chances of planning anything using FB chat? With email, you can contact everyone you need to, and people can write you back at their convenience. At the very least, FB needs to get rid of whatever limit they put on their email messaging usage, but your ideas are great as well.

#2 David Sterry on 11.08.08 at 11:22 pm

That’s a neat idea. Maybe Zuckerberg is saving that for if ever his new law of doubling shared data starts to lag. Also, I’m fairly sure an @facebook.com email account or fbmail.com would have a handy side effect of pointing people back to one’s profile. I’m trying to think of reasons why they wouldn’t do this and I can’t think of a good one…it is very close to their core communications mission. Nice post.