Today’s subject will be the form of social media I use the most-Facebook–and it will cover the basics for all the newbies out there!
Facebook is a form of social media called social networking (briefly defined as an online community sharing interests and activities). In fact, Facebook (founded in 2004) is a great example of the potential spread and influence of social media; initially only Harvard students were able to become members but it rapidly spread to include university and then high school students. Today anyone can become a member and there are over 175 million users worldwide.
HOW IT WORKS:
Users join Facebook and create a profile which can include items such as photos, interests and personal details. Users then start to connect with friends, join a network (by location), and join groups. When you ‘become friends’ with another person you have access to their profile which includes their status updates, photos, a list of their friends etc. You can request to become friends with someone you see on one of your current friend’s lists, and so your network expands. Additionally, you can look up and add people by name, email address or membership in a group. Who can see your Facebook account and what they can see is determined by individual privacy settings.
On a personal note, I love Facebook because it lets me keep in touch with friends all around the world. Unfortunately I can’t make it to places like Malta, Dubai or Australia as much as I’d like but I still know what is going on in my friend’s lives and can see photos of what they’ve been up to–it makes me feel like we will never lose that connection. Recently, I’ve also re-connected with a number of friends from high school! Chess tournaments calendar
CAUSES: an area where users can display the causes that they are supporting
CHAT: users can communicate via instant message.
EVENTS: a way for users to let friends know about and organize social events (includes: event name host, time, place, guest list etc.). Allows photos and videos concerning the event to be added to the event page.
GIFTS: users can send a virtual gift to a friend.
GROUPS: enable groups of people with similar interests to gather and connect online.
MARKETPLACE: a place to post free classified ads.
MESSAGES: private emails that no one but the sender and user can view.
NEWSFEED: user receives an updated feed about their friends’ details such as status and profile changes, upcoming events and birthdays.
NOTES: a blogging feature where users can import blogs.
PAGES: page owners (individuals or businesses) create their own page and develop a following of ‘fans’. Allows a page owner to advertise to Facebook users, provides traffic analysis features, and can be seen and searched both inside and outside of Facebook.
PHOTOS: people can post photos that are visible to others. These photos can be commented on and ‘tagged’ (labeled with a friend’s name who is sent a notification and a link to the photo).
PLATFORM: access to interactive games like Scrabble and Chess and other applications such as Birthday Calendar, which are created by software developers not working for Facebook.