Outlook 2010 features a new Outlook Social Connector that integrates Outlook with several social networking sites, such as Facebook, Twitter and My Space. The idea is to provide a pane at the bottom of each message that shows the recent social networking updates from the senders and recipients in each message. Outlook 2010 will also pull photos or avatars of the senders and recipients from these social networks to provide a fuller, richer and more personal messaging experience.
For more information about the Outlook Social Connector, see Announcing the Outlook Social Connector on the Outlook product team's blog.
While this might be a good idea for home users or businesses that are more open to social networking, I find that most corporate networks block access to social networking sites like Facebook, Twitter, and My Space. This renders the Outlook Social Connector useless and takes up valuable screen real estate, as shown below.
If you happen to click the "People Pane" (highlighted in red above) it expands to show more information from the configured social networking sites, taking up even more room. Here's how to get rid of it.
On the Outlook 2010 main screen click the View tab, then People Pane, then select Off. Viola!