Facebook has copied another play from the Twitter playbook with the introduction of @replies in status updates.
Although the concept is a direct copy, Facebook engineer Tom Occhino explains that the @replies do come with some extra level of usability: auto suggestions.
Now, when you are writing a status update and want to add a friend’s name to something you are posting, just include the “@” symbol beforehand. As you type the name of what you would like to reference, a drop-down menu will appear that allows you to choose from your list of friends and other connections, including groups, events, applications and Pages. Soon, you’ll be able to tag friends from applications as well. The “@” symbol will not be displayed in the published status update or post after you’ve added your tags.
Occhino goes on to say that Facebook hopes “that tagging your status updates and others posts from the Publisher will enable you to share in a more meaningful and engaging way, and connect with even more people.”
The feature is being “rolled out over the course of the next few weeks” so some Facebook users will see it before others.