Facebook’s Extreme Makeover: It’s Happening, Already

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Read, Watch, Listen.

That’s the guiding mantra heading into the much-anticipated f8 announcement on Thursday (today), though Facebook has been nipping-n-tucking ahead of its big day.  Already, Facebook is rolling out changes to its layout: Instead of a ‘dumb news feed’ of updates, Facebook is reallocating information into ‘Top Stories,’ endless friend updates in a sidebar, and then a chronological list of ‘Recent Stories’.

Right now, the right side is all about real-time updates from friends, which could be the place where real-time listening activity is also updated.  Or, at least one place where this happens: other tips suggest a media ‘ticker,’ and integrated apps that perform without leaving Facebook.

It’s all prelude to an entertainment-themed overhaul. Of course, the ‘Watch’ and ‘Listen’ parts are most intesting parts for the music industry, and the action is expected to start with music.

On that ‘keynote,’ Spotify, Turntable.fm, iHeartRadio and VEVO are topping the list of expected integrated partners (it looks like Pandora is not part of this, though other names include MOG, Rdio, and Myxer).  That is part of an increasingly media-tinged Facebook vision, with successes in gaming apps expected to guide the strategy.

Meanwhile, Facebook is also actively moving to strengthen its ties with the music and film industries.  According to Reuters, ex-MySpace co-President Jason Hirschhorn was being courted for the role at one stage.

The f8 keynote kickoff is slated for 10am PCT from San Francisco.  We’ll have live coverage.