Since FaceBook’s near-disastrous initial stock offering last year, the social media giant has been struggling to regain its supremacy in the social media world.  Simplex-IT has just uncovered what their “next big thing” is, and their secret plan for introducing it to the world using a hit NBC show.  And we’ve got the audio proof (see the links below)!

And it’s, well, it’s unusual.  At first glance FaceBook is actually moving back in time with their offering, and getting into the publishing service.  They’re essentially going to be offering a hard copy subscription edition of FaceBook.

fb^2Yup, that’s right.  The new service, tentatively titled “FB^2” or “FB Squared” (for “FaceBook Book,” get it?) will deliver each month a hardcopy-magazine style copy of all of the updates added by the subscribers and their “friends.”  This magazine (we tried getting our hands on a prototype but couldn’t) will include advertising similar to ads found online with FaceBook, but with a QR code, allowing the reader to use their mobile phone to quickly look up the ad.  Companies already advertising on FaceBook will get first crack at FB^2 ads for free, although we’re sure there will be a charge added before too long.

Our first thought was “who in their right mind…?” but after a while it became clear.  Think about it for a moment:

  • No risk of virus or lost or corrupted data
  • No hacking
  • No identity theft
  • Finally a FaceBook that appeals to the Amish!

How’d we hear about it?  Without going into details Simplex-IT got a hold of the audio of one of the final online meetings detailing the final details of the product.  Here’s the lifted audio of an unnamed Product Manager making his pitch:

Product Portion of FB Discussion

And then we thought about the “retro” appeal.  Think of all the things that are “out of style” that find their way back.  Music, fashion, hairstyles to name a few.  Think technology is immune?  Think again, the LP industry is making a mini-comeback, with many industry artists putting out their works on vinyl.

And if you’re ever offline or without power, you can sit down and open up your FaceBook.  Excuse me, your FB^2.

And that’s where NBC comes in.  NBC, which is desperate for anything even approaching good ratings, has the closest thing to a hit in the series “Revolution.”  The basis for the show is pretty simple.  From NBC’s web site:  What would you do without it all? In this epic adventure…a family struggles to reunite in an American landscape where every single piece of technology – computers, planes, cars, phones, even lights – has mysteriously blacked out forever.

(Big Spoiler alert for those watching the show!)

A big part of that show is how one of the characters, “General Monroe,” went from being a Marine soldier to leader of one of the country’s largest militias.

In an upcoming episode (scheduled to be broadcast Monday April 8th) it will be revealed that Monroe has a subscription to FB^2 and recognized the importance of maintaining the “fabric of the social media that once made this country great” (a line from the show).  In the show, Monroe and several of his Marine friends raided Post Offices throughout the area and grabbed all of the FB^2 issues that were just about to be released.  Having controlled the market of the now-hardcopy only social media updates, they essentially became the only social media game in town.  And with knowledge comes power.

Here’s the part of the discussion dealing with how that will work:  Part 2 of discussion dealing with FB Squared and NBC

It seems the placement won’t end there.  It looks like the rebels seeking to end Monroe’s tyranny are going to fight fire with fire, and will be developing their own Facebook (FB^3, anyone?) as a counter to Monroe’s monopoly.

We’ve also heard about an audio book version, with William Shatner (TV’s Star Trek) being the narrator.