Product Update: Removing “Follow All”

|   Feb 28, 2012

This week, Socialcast has made a change to how following relationships work in some communities.

Until now, we’ve offered the option of “follow-all,” which allowed both administrators and employees to automatically follow all members of a community. As the community grew, employees didn’t have to manually follow new users – they simply followed all new members automatically. For small companies, this was often a simple option to make sure that teams were staying aligned and informed. But for big companies, some users started to follow tens of thousands of other users. We realized that we had to make a change.

After an analysis of the “follow all” feature on performance and usage, we found three distinct flaws. First, administrators could force the “follow all” feature onto all accounts, which meant that admins were overriding the preferences of users. Second, users who had “follow all” turned on in big communities were not getting the benefit of following only the people and topics important to them. Instead, they were bombarded with information that really wasn’t relevant to them – and which could be viewed more easily in the Company Stream. Third, and most important, was that this setting was impacting performance. We realized that we could speed up community load times and improve performance overall by removing this feature.

As we remove the “follow all” setting, it’s important to note that an almost identical stream of all public messages is available via the Company Stream. Only a user’s Home Stream will be impacted by this change. We’ve heard from some customers with smaller communities that Home Streams do seem to be more empty than usual, and this is why. If you’re affected, you’ll want to go in and follow the people important to you from the Company Directory. We realize that this may cause a few minutes of work, but we are confident that this will enhance your experience with the product.

If you have questions on this change, please email us and we will be happy to help.

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What is Socialcast?

Socialcast by VMware (NYSE: VMW) is a social network for business uniting people, information, and applications with its real-time enterprise activity stream engine. Behind the firewall or in the cloud, Socialcast enables instant collaboration in a secure environment. Socialcast is headquartered in San Francisco, California.