This isn’t exactly Facebook’s mystery announcement (we’ll still have to wait a little bit for that), but in the shadow of its press event today, Facebook also today made a small but interesting update to its Open Graph tags for media publishers that you’ll likely see in your news feed soon. Publishers can now add two new tags to their HTML that will help Facebook add links to their own Facebook pages and links to the author’s Facebook profile in content previews.
When the publisher tag is set, a “like” button for the publisher’s Facebook page will appear in the content preview whenever an article is shared. The author tag works similarly and will display a “follow” button in the preview that allows Facebook users to follow the author on the site. This, of course, only works if the author has activated Facebook’s Twitter-like follow feature.
All it takes for a publisher to activate this is to add two lines of code to their HTML pages. These tags join Facebook’s other Open Graph tags for displaying article titles, descriptions and associated images.
Facebook also announced a number of other small changes to its platform. Developers will now have to submit at least two screenshots of their app’s user flow when they submit their apps for review, for example, and they can now suppress the creation of a News Feed story when they create a new event for a page.