So, here is the first post of my “More Than Just Facebook and Email” series, ironically about Facebook.
Facebook is a common term and place to be today. (In MS Word it is counted as a word.) It has the utility to catch up with old friends, plan surprise birthday parties, expose embarrassing photos of your best friend from elementary school; as well as with the original intention of stay connected with friends and family.
I am going to skip the step-by-step tutorial on this one and jump straight for the tips that I have quite helpful:
- Everyone at one time or another has lost their phone or just upgraded yet for some reason Mr. Verizon, Mr. AT&T, or Mr. Sprint cannot transfer your numbers over to the new phone. As anyone smart homosapien would do you consult Facebook for help. Your friend then receives an invite to a Group usually entitled, “I Know You Hate These Groups, But I Need Your Number” or “I Told Myself I Was Never Going To Do This But Here I Am, My Phone Drowned, I Need Your Number!” Here in lies the problem, no not the title but the medium in which you sent it. Yes, the Group classification is the problem. As much I would love you give you my number or any other friend of yours would, I highly doubt they would like to be apart of a Group marking your phone’s death for the rest of their Facebook life. The Solution, make an Event. You could even keep the same super long title but by making it an Event, it will automatically go away after awhile. I will strike down the rebuttal of: “We’ll Patrick, I want ALL my friends to be able to respond to it, how could they do that if it disappears,” with: the people that would actually respond to your invite would only need a week or two respond. So, make an Event a few weeks out and invite ALL your friends, if you really want to spice it up then actually have a party (or funeral) for your phone. (Wow, that is a great idea, that is going to happen for my next phone! You are all invited!)
- Recently, Facebook has changed their layout and interface (again). One of my friends and fellow blogger Kim has asked the question that everyone is screaming at their computer screen when they see the new site, “WHYYYYYY!” Keep in mind that i am not Facebook. In my opinion Facebook is trying to extend its product life. In business there is a term, Product Life Cycle. It shows how the popularity of a product through a simple bell curve graph. It consists of Development, Introduction, Growth, Maturity, Decline. Okay Patrick get back to Facebook. Gladly, all Facebook is trying to do is extend its “maturity” stage just as Tide detergent would come out with a “New And Improved Formula!” If Facebook didn’t constantly improve its layout it could possibly fall to the way side of another online community that looks, feels, and operates a lot better. When you actually start to browse through the new interface it works well. Tabbed icons for “Messages”, “Friend Requests”, and “Notifications” are used combined with an awesome sidebar full of the content oriented stuff but most noticeably is the “Friends Online” feature. Having this always in sight encourages chatting as well as real time interaction over the web. I also enjoy the search bar front and center, which picks up on anything and everyone when you put even just a single letter in it. (Unfortunately they did not incorporate my suggestion). So, instead of cursing your screen when Facebook does it again in 6 months, just praise them that they are keeping it fresh.
- My last topic comes from my most recent comment via Another Day on Facebook. He brought up a good point when he said, “Will you talk about it as a powerful tool or as something that is dangerous to individuals privacy?” I have always scene it as a powerful tool for socializing and such but it can be dangerous. All to often I see Facebook profiles with full mailing address, phone number, email, and AIM or Skype name. This is a huge mistake. For me, all the people that would want my phone number or address have it. It doesn’t make sense to have all your personal info out for display to anyone that glances at your info page, yes mostly it will be your friends but there are people that have bad intentions while browsing. So only post your email (and Skype name, tops) to keep yourself and your personal info in your hands and not anyone else’s. If someone wanted it desperately enough they could email or message you. (Okay, enough of my soup box). I would also suggest to change the majority of your Privacy settings to “Friends of Friends” or stricter options. Just be cautious while social.
You deserve a 15 minute break on Facebook if you have read this far, congrats. I hope this complements your Facebooking.
Next Friday I will be discussing Gmail. Get ready!