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Facebook to Incorporate Ads into Your News Feed Come 2012

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Chances are that if you’re a Facebook user, you’ve had to endure more than a few inane status updates by your Facebook friends, such as updates that reveal too much information (“I need a poo again!”), that talk about boring, quotidian stuff (“Had a meeting then I drank tea”), or that include uncessary use of internet acronyms (“Katherine couldn't get the stain out of her mug roflmao.”)
However, even if you don’t like such updates flooding your news feed, you could always block the friends whose updates you don’t like. Starting from January, however, Facebook will be introducing what they term as “sponsored stories” social ads into news feeds, much like how Twitter has included promoted tweets from advertisers.
For now, Facebook plans to only limit users’ exposure to sponsored stories to only one in the news feed each day, according to TechCrunch.
“They’ll only feature stories about friends or Pages that users already like. Users won’t be able to opt out of seeing Sponsored Stories in the news feed or having their activity used in them, but they will be able to ‘x’ out individual ads. The ads won’t immediately appear in the mobile news feed, though Facebook is considering the idea.”
Here are the types of ads that you’ll see in your news feed:

And here’s how a sponsored story will look like:

The daily ads, such as the one above from Ben & Jerry's (UN), will likely prove to be controversial among Facebook users, with some who will no doubt be unhappy that Facebook is making money off of the personal tastes of their friends, while others will argue that this is a fair exchange for the free social networking service that the company provides. But, just like the new Timeline, these new sponsored stories are here to stay, whether we like it or not. Meanwhile, Google (GOOG) must be rubbing its hands in anticipation of a user revolt.
POSITION:  No positions in stocks mentioned.