Facebook Username Landrush

First Question: Does this apply to you? If you have a Facebook Fan Page with over 1000 fans (as of the end of May) , you can now get a username that will make it a little easier to find your page. If you are the trademark owner for the term you want to get, for example facebook.com/wholefoods, then you have nothing to worry about. Trademark owners don't have to worry about squatters, as there is a process in place to prevent this anyway.
But what if you're a Wedding Photographer in a medium-size city, and your business is called BeautifulWeddings.com? Your business name is pretty generic, and you probably don't have over 1000 fans. You can cross your fingers and hope that you get to 1000 before someone else in the wedding industry reserves that username, or you can pick something else.Facebook has done a pretty good job of thinking this through to prevent squatters, and protect trademarks, but for the small business person, looking to maximize their search engine optimization, and google-juice by having a great username, this may be a hairy situation.

For those concerned about personal profiles, just be first. There are lots of Andrew Kinnears out there, but I plan on doing my best to be first. If your name is common, you may want to set your alarm... Midnight on Friday night EDT (12:01 Saturday June 13th, 2009 EDT) the Facebook servers are going to get absolutely HAMMERED with traffic, so be patient, have a strategy, and be patient.
I have a few pages that I manage, including some pages for work, but it's pretty simple to figure out. The work stuff, though under 1000, are protected by trademark. --Everything else is either under 1000 and doesn't qualify or over 1000 fans, and I'll need to make sure I get it. There isn't any sneaky-thinking going on here: You can't squat, you can't protect multiple names, you pick a winner and go for it.

Question #2: Does this matter for regular users? No. Short Answer. Google can find you right now, even with the big number in your URL, so it will just be easier. It won't violate your privacy, as you will still have all the same controls.

Question #3: Will this be like MySpace.com where everyone has a stupid username? Yes and No. Anyone with a brain will attempt to get their name, and barring that should give up. Usernames are FOREVER. If you can't get your name, but you decide to register PhoenixCoyotesFan2009 as your username--- you'll feel pretty stupid when the team moves to Hamilton. I recommend trying to get your name, and if you can't-- STOP. Facebook is a social network, designed to connect the REAL you to your REAL friends. That's why it doesn't suck. That's why it has far surpassed the success of MySpace. Sure there are spammers, but they are on the periphery.

Question #4: If I'm a regular person, not a marketing guru, not a brand, should I bother? Again-- why not? Try to get your name, and if you can't--- oh well! It's not like you won't be found by the people who want to find you. Google and Facebook know more about you and your Socialgraph than any two other organizations on earth. I would say brush up on your awareness of your privacy settings, what's being published to whom, and wait to see what's next. What would you rather have facebook.com/andrewkinnear or facebook.com/andrewdk2009 ? The answer is either A) the winner or B) Google me. Why add to the complexity of your online digital brand when you can simplify and harmonize.