Thursday, July 2, 2009

To Facebook ... or not to Facebook?

Facebook? Ah yes, facebook....

Over a year ago I created a facebook account, more out of curiosity than really wanting to do anything with it,. I wasn’t even sure what you do with, or on facebook, for that matter and at the time there were also a number of dismissive remarks being made, such as: “no-one over 35 should be on facebook” and “only people without a life are on facebook”, etc. etc. etc.

Although already overburdened, to contend with yet another “to do”, I was curious and wanted to know what all the hype was about. I signed up, went online, accepted the few friends who were already frantically knocking, looked for a few people, and then got on with life. As time went by, I started setting up my pages, playing around with settings, and options, I started looking for current friends, and looked up lost friends, accepted friend requests, loaded pictures and so forth. Before I knew it, I was hooked and visiting at least a few times a week.

In the middle of doing something else, I would suddenly think of a face or a name from somewhere in the past. "I wonder if they're on facebook?" making notes, so as not to forget to look them up, when next online. And so it went….

What has “joining the facebook brigade” meant to me? Well firstly, I learnt that like everything else in life, what you put in is what you get out – i.e. the more you interact, post comments, communicate, the more “friends” do the same, thereby making it a much more interactive and interesting application.

Secondly, the realization that life does, after all, move on and we do lose contact (willingly or unwillingly) with people. The world being as it is, people relocate all over the place, and this normally does mean that you may lose touch. Through facebook I've found a vast number of people with whom I'd lost contact and I'm in touch with a large number of people that I worked with for almost 15 years - they are after all an indelible part of my life.

Thirdly, facebook makes it so easy to communicate with people, either in email, with photographs, comments or notes - so instead of having to email or call everyone, you can post, your pictures, news, whatever, on facebook and people instantly have access.

Personally I've stopped “auditing” why I use or enjoy facebook. Quite simply, I have made contact with many people, that I'm glad to be in touch with. It's a great tool to load some of my favorite stories, humour, anecdotes and pictures (photography is one of my passions, and what is the point, if not shared?). As I run a business from home, facebook serves as an excellent tool to stay in touch, to share a little, chat a little, laugh a little and simply just have fun – I would otherwise feel overwhelmingly isolated. And none of this means that you need to spend hours and hours on facebook – quite frankly, I aim to go on regularly, handle the important actions in the quickest possible time – what is important is that you interact and respond regularly

So, am I a facebook convert? Absolutely! For me, facebook has been about quality rather than quantity, and it’s certainly added value to my life.


Ps. did you know that it also makes a great tool to advertise your business on?
Ps2. are you aware that facebook has a number of privacy and security settings, so you can enable who can see or access what?

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