Facebook’s Subscribe Button Takes on Twitter

Facebook’s preparing to let publisher sites install a Subscribe button allowing users to follow reporters, celebrities, politicians, athletes, and other high profile individuals they may not know.

The function was first unveiled in September. In a manner similar to Twitter, it lets users view a public figure’s Facebook updates and learn more by clicking on links in the post. Its extension to publisher sites via a button echoes Twitter’s own Follow button for website owners.

The button generally does not apply to brands, which will continue to use the “like” button on their sites, but may be useful for marketers that employ high profile executives (such as Richard Branson for Virgin Group’s 400 companies) or leverage their spokespeople’s social channels.

In an email sent to ClickZ News Wednesday, a Facebook spokersperson said, “We will soon launch the Subscribe plugin, an extension of the Subscribe button, that publishers and other developers can add to their web sites to make it easy for people to connect to reporters and public figures in one click. We have no further details to share at this time.”

TechCrunch first reported the development this morning from the Le Web conference in Paris, where Joanna Shields, VP and managing director for Facebook Europe, Middle East and Africa, made the announcement.

Zachary Rodgers contributed.

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