I blogged about the Clean Profile app last week, but now Facebook have made their own announcement:
Hide Facebook Apps: Official Tool Coming Soon (Read/Write Web)
This is the official response to the growing user base which feels Facebook has become far too cluttered of late, with new applications springing up every day, and many people adding indiscriminately. The sheer number of new applications — in conjunction with the dubious spamming tactics used to proliferate them — has become a well-documented nuisance among the Facebook community.
Although it’s obviously welcome news that something is finally being done, I can’t help but feel that Facebook is coming at the problem from a strange angle. Instead of allowing the end user to decide how much clutter they want to view on friends’ pages (as per Clean Profile), the official response puts the onus on the clutterer. It’s an opportunity for users to “clean up their mess” effectively.
The idea is you will create an “extended profile” into which you can shove all the application junk you rarely use, leaving the default profile as a clean, quick-loading summary page. That’s the plan anyway… I suppose time will tell how well this works. What’s certain right now is that application developers are (understandably) not impressed, since this move will inevitably curtail their market-spread.