It’s great in this day and age to have effective ways of social networking. I started my journey sometime I believe in 2006, and it was on Myspace first. I easily got locked into the hype: trying to get as many friends as possible, decorating your page, putting music on your page, the coveted ‘relationship’ status. I met a few boyfriends over Myspace, too (that doesn’t sound wrong at all, does it?). It was all fun and games, and I was definitely hooked.
Not more than six months later, I was introduced to Facebook. I actually had a Facebook account maybe only a month after the creation of my Myspace account, but at that point it was really only for college students. The summer before I trotted off to college I started getting into Facebook more than Myspace. It was really cool, especially, that everybody who was headed off to Luther for the fall of 2006 was easily able to connect with one another. You were able to figure out what types of people you had most in common with, people majoring in the same thing you planned to, even which people were going to be in your wing of a certain dorm. It was wild, fun, and a great way to get to know people ahead of actually MEETING them.
A lot of the concepts were similar between Myspace and Facebook. Who had the most friends, who had the most wall postings, what your relationship status was. As cool as it was to edit the look of your page through Myspace, I opted for the cleaner and more polished look from Facebook. Plus, I didn’t seem to get messages from stalkers from Facebook nearly as much as I did on Myspace! That was always a nice thing!
Now that I’ve been a Facebook user for almost four years now, I’ve witnessed most of the changes that have taken place. I remember Facebook when it was only college students and a select few in high school. I remember how mad most of the people on campus were when we realized that anybody else now had access to use and utilize Facebook, but that was short lived, and we got used to it pretty quickly. I remember when it didn’t have the main feed looking the way it does now: people were pretty annoyed about that. I remember when everything on your page was all in one section, with your information on top and your wall on the bottom. I could go on.
It makes me laugh when people always complain about Facebook making some large change, because within a month or two people just adjust anyways. I admit that I haven’t always been happy with the changes made, but now I can’t even remember well the way things were before the change. We all adjust pretty quickly to them.
I’ve also heard a lot of complaints with the changes in the Privacy settings. Now, I don’t follow the regulations to a T (in fact, I barely follow them at all), but Facebook has always given us pretty secure privacy options if we really want them. Often times the users have to activate them to be put into use, but it’s much more effective than complaining that Facebook is allowing some things to be not as private. If you can make it private, just click or unclick the box. Simple as that. And I don’t have any problems with privacy whatsoever.
There is a lot of truth about being careful with what you put on your Facebook, too. Sure, it might feel relieving to complain about your job, or your school, but if you take it too far you have no guarantees that somebody on your friends list won’t spill the beans. Even if you remove it, all they have to do is take a snapshot of the page before you have done so, and they have evidence. It’s ok to complain a little, but make sure you are tactful about it. Also, don’t put any pictures that might have the same effect. I’ve read articles about people not being hired or let into certain graduate schools because the individual participating in activities that particular institution does not support. Also- do you want ALL your family and friends to know everything? You might think only your friends notice that stuff, but I’ve gotten quite a few side comments from family members. I also realize that I do have a 10 year old in my friend’s page, and I have to be appropriate as well.
I can’t lie; I do heavily utilize the custom privacy features. Some battles aren’t worth picking, and my dad likes to battle EVERYTHING. So I just state that I don’t want him seeing specific features. I wouldn’t suggest doing this with everybody, especially because it would take a lot of time, but it helps you avoid situations that might cause some trouble. I wouldn’t fully rely on this feature either, because if friends are viewing another mutual friend’s page, they might get annoyed if they realize they can’t view certain content while the other friend can.
It’s also really crazy to see Facebook on your phone and iPod; makes me wonder what ways Facebook will go next. How about Facebook 3D? Oh look, her profile picture pops out! Almost everybody I know over the age of 14 has a Facebook. It’s part of our daily conversation, nothing special, it’s just THERE. I’ve seen pages for animals and babies.
And fan pages! Ooh, those are absolutely hilarious! I believe the trend started last year, but people will click ‘Become a Fan’ (actually, now it’s ‘Like’) on some page that people enjoy or have in common. Some of them are situations, or quotes. Here are a few of the things I ‘Like’:
‘Join if you can name more Pokemon than Presidents’
‘Spongebob’s face when he figured out Squidward likes Krabby Patties’
‘The S Thing we All Drew in Elementary School’
And there are a ton of others as well. I think it’s actually a cute concept. I can see why people might find it stupid, but even my boyfriend has joined a fan page with something that he really liked. You just see something and think ‘I’VE DONE THAT!’ or ‘I LOVE THAT!’ and the temptation is so great!
Facebook, oh Facebook, why must you torment me? It’s gotten so bad that I don’t even turn it off when I’m away from my computer. I have it on my phone, my iPod; Facebook is never out of reach. I don’t know how I’d live without it. It’s great to be able to talk to any of my friends on chat, send them a message, create groups to get together, and put ideas in discussion groups.
I wonder if Facebook will be forever, or I wonder what will come next…
11 months ago