The Facebook profile picture has remained virtually unchanged for what, nearly 10 years now? Nowadays, your web experience is way more dynamic than it was back then, and it makes sense that your Facebook profile should follow suit. So, starting soon, you'll be able to use a seven-second looping video as your profile pic on Facebook. The age of the GIF is upon us!
"Profile pictures are not just static portraits. They represent what’s going in your life right now and what’s important to you," Facebook product managers Aigerim Shorman and Tony Hsieh wrote in a blog post today.
GIF pics aren't Facebook's only profile-related update: The company is also making it easier to temporarily change your profile pic in accordance with trending movements (like celebrating Pride). You'll be able to update the photo and set it to automatically revert back to your original profile picture at a specified time.
The social platform is also offering more granular controls as to what information is publicly and privately shared (no, you do not have to pay $6 to keep your profile private, in case you've been seeing that hoax go around). You can make a new one-line Bio field public if you want to add a description for people who search for you, you can adjust whether fields like "Work" and "Education" appear publicly or not, and you can add up to five photos that show up publicly. Your mobile Facebook profile will also undergo a slight redesign, with the profile pic front and center.
With these changes, it's clear that Facebook does want you to share more about yourself publicly with the world, but you should by no means feel obligated to do so. The more information you share, the more vulnerable you could make yourself to problems like identity theft or stalking.
However, we are all about the GIF-ification of our profile pictures. It's perfect timing, considering the iPhone's new GIF-like Live Photos feature. These updates are rolling out beginning today, though, so you may not be able to change yours right away. BRB while we refresh our Facebook page incessantly until we're able to upload our own hypnotically looping profile video.
Update: For clarification, you are only able to upload video file formats as a profile picture, not .GIF files. However, they will then loop in a GIF-like way.