The B cell antigen receptor (BCR) plays a central role in the self/nonself selection of B lymphocytes and in their activation by cognate antigen during the clonal selection process. It was long thought that most cell surface receptors, including the BCR, were freely diffusing and randomly distributed. Since the advent of superresolution techniques, it has become clear that the plasma membrane is compartmentalized and highly organized at the nanometer scale. Hence, a complete understanding of the precise conformation and activation mechanism of the BCR must take into account the organization of the B cell plasma membrane. We review here the recent literature on the nanoscale organization of the lymphocyte membrane and discuss how this new information influences our view of the conformational changes that the BCR undergoes during activation.