UPDATED: See below. Yep, definitely a hoax but it’s always fun to unpick these things…
“It's both terrifyingly interesting and interestingly terrifying”
According to VICE, TNW Conference is quite the event
Okay, this could well be hoax but it would be remiss of us to ignore it.
A blogger has posted a story about how he is involved in testing for Facebook Pro, a new paid version of the social networking service. This would, it appears, be aimed at competing with LinkedIn and would feature:
* Ability to store Work History
* Ability to write Recommendations on profiles
* Tighter control over Profile Security
* Additional Contact Method fields
* Certification badges
* Digital Business cards
This account would supposedly cost $29.95 for 6 months.
A number of *possible* accounts have been uncovered including this one which appear to reference the new service.
Why we think it may well be a hoax:
1. The supposedly ‘uncovered’ profiles of people who have these acounts were all posted to Hacker News by people with brand new user accounts on the forum within a few minutes of each other.
2. The ‘upgrade to Facebook Pro’ images look overly processed – not very professional.
3. This doesn’t feel like the way Facebook would do this kind of testing. The ‘Announce and then roll out to a limited number of users’ model is Facebook’s usual approach, not holding secret beta testing.
UPDATE: Someone who appears to be Facebook staff has commented on this story on Hacker News that: “This is a scam. I’ve just sent it to our internal review committee, but I’m guessing they’re already aware of it and taking steps to shut it down.”
UPDATE 2: Yep, as we thought it was all an orchestrated joke.You have to get up pretty early in the morning to fool The Next Web! Still, it’s always fun to unpick these things…
Read next: The Next Web's Weekly Recap