Facebook Removes Automatic Feed Form Publishing as Stream is Unveiled

facebook platform developers

As developers have no doubt heard by now, Facebook unveiled its new Stream API yesterday. Along with the update, Facebook appears to have modified Feed Forms to give advantages to the new Stream API methods.

As several developers noticed yesterday on the Developer Forums, Facebook appears to have removed the ability for an application to “remember” a users choice when publishing a Feed Story via a Feed Form. Here is a before-and-after of the change:





As you can see, the checkbox in the lower-left corner has been removed. It would appear as if Facebook is trying to move away from the Feed Form dialog boxes, and towards having all Stream content publishes via their new Stream.Publish methods. It’s worth pointing out that with the new Stream.Publish method, a user must grant your application permission only once in order to publish any number of stories. In this way, the new Stream API methods are more powerful than the now “outdated” Feed Forms.

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6 Responses to “Facebook Removes Automatic Feed Form Publishing as Stream is Unveiled”

  1. Ralph Haygood says:

    It’s also worth pointing out that, at least according to the documentation (http://wiki.developers.facebook.com/index.php/Stream.publish), ordinary users cannot yet grant the required permission, which makes Stream.publish of no practical use at present. Meanwhile, the old feed form scheme is broken (http://bugs.developers.facebook.com/process_bug.cgi); not only is the “Always do this” checkbox not displayed, the customized prompt and initial content aren’t displayed either. I’m not impressed.

  2. Ralph Haygood says:

    Follow up: I’m happy to report that Facebook has just fixed the old scheme. The checkbox is indeed gone, but the customized prompt and intial content are back, which is what really matters to me.

  3. Josh Elman says:

    Thanks Mike for the post. We think the new stream APIs are really exciting and give developers new tools and ways to help users share interesting content in their streams.

    We’ve found that Feed Forms can be an incredibly useful tool for users to post to their streams – giving them control on a story-by-story basis lets users choose what appears in their stream – and we’ve seen pretty much all users choose to publish some stories but not all. The new feed form gives the user a great opportunity to add a comment around what they are posting as well.

    When we recently changed the Feed Forms, we added the comment field. Given that the comment applies directly to the story being published, the “always” did not make as much sense for the dialog so we recently decided to remove that.

    Now we’ve added a new way for users to post through the stream.publish methods. Users can grant a permission to do this directly, and we encourage you to prompt for that permission if it makes sense contextually in your app. We encourage you to support Feed Forms by default for your users, and invite them to grant the special permission if/when they are taking a lot of actions, or for mobile or other experiences where feed forms do not apply.

  4. Marc Lanni says:

    The only problem I can see is that there is no longer an opt-out in the application settings which leads to some users complaining of this pop every time they do something inside an app – and no way to turn it off – tested with the app settings “publish short one liners” un-clicked and it still pops this publish box

  5. Brent Baisley says:

    I must say, its about time Facebook changed the publishing API. After all, it’s been about 2 months since the last change.

  6. cindy says:

    Can we customize the text of “Publish the story to cindy’s profile”?

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