Cancel your Stanley Cup celebrations (GO WINGS!) or any other plans you might have Friday night, if you plan on snagging a user name you want on Facebook. According to Facebook you will be able to create a user name for yourself on Saturday, June 13th, at 12:00 AM.
Basically what this means is that instead of having a random string of numbers to identify the millions of people on their Facebook accounts, they have decided to allow users to create their own. The idea is to make it easier for search engines to find you on the web, which is great however there are a couple of catches.
Obviously no one can have the same user name, which means that if you really want a certain name then you better be ready to put up a fight come Saturday morning. Also, when you do pick a user name, make sure it is one that is appropriate because once you pick one you can not change it.
Facebook has also stated that users who sign-up for a custom page after May 31st may not be able to sign-up for a user name immediately to eliminate squatters (people who create user names to later distribute to other people for profit). I wonder how great that will work?!
There is also a Facebook website that is meant to protect trademarked companies from being registered by different people, but so far there have been no steps to prevent names of celebrities or public figures from being impersonated. So I guess if you want to be known as Paris Hilton or Oprah then your dream might come true, but I am sure Facebook will somehow come up with some more regulations for this.
Overall, I think it will be interesting to see how this will play out. Will I be the only one that is actually out at the bar Friday night, while all my friends are trying to secure their user name? I wonder how this will evolve over time? And also why did Facebook pick a Friday night for this whole thing to go down? It is really disrupting my birthday weekend!