New Facebook email…no subject line. Why?

Facebook recently announced a new messaging system, and it works more like email…but with a few limitations (play this video by Cnet for more details).
Some limitations include not being able to add a subject line to the email and not being able to send the email to multiple recipients.

However Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg was quick to point out that Facebook is not trying to replace current email systems  but the idea is to take advantage of how people are communicating these days, which is via instant messages.

So if Facebook is not trying to replace current email systems, what is the point of the new @facebook.com messaging system?

Here are a few thoughts…


A popular idea that seems to be circulating is that the younger generation prefer more instant and personal communication that can be provided by traditional email systems.

Think of it this way. First we had letters that used to be sent via the post office. Then a new generation came up with an even faster way to communicate, which was email. The old way of sending letters is now called snail mail and is virtually dead from a social perspective. Only bank statements, bills, and “official” documents seem to still stubbornly hold on to the old system.

Another generation is now entering the fray and email is too slow for them as well, so enter the world of instant messages…

In fact Google had hit on the same idea when the decided to create Google Wave, although I think Facebook will be more successful at capitalizing on this idea just because of the sheer number of people using Facebook.

In essence their seems to be some consensus here…that email may go the same way as snail mail, and that is,  limited to more formal communication. Social communication is going to be more instant and faster than email. In this new type of instant social communication, who needs a subject line?