When I was a kid, another kid in my neighborhood used to go up to people he knew and people he didn’t know too and ask, “Are you my friend the best?”
If computers were as advanced as they are now, and if he were good with computers, he could have invented Facebook, or MySpace. But they weren’t and he wasn’t, so he didn’t.
My oldest friend recently joined Facebook and he invited me to join, so I did. I’m certainly no expert, but here are a few things I’ve learned in the few days I’ve belonged. The first is both of my adult children use Facebook. I am not going to ask them to be my friends. I don’t think they’d want that. I’m their father, not their friend.
Some people are very selective and some people want to accumulate as many friends as possible. If you have a lot of friends and they’re all chatty, you could spend your entire life reading your wall. I know some people are addicted to Facebook. I’m not, at least not yet. I’ll keep you posted right here and maybe on my wall too.
A couple of people I don’t know invited me to be their friends. I accepted one of them because he is and I used to be in the broadcast news business and we know a lot of the same people. The guy posts a lot. He posts more than everyone else on my list of friends combined. It’s almost like having your own personal AP news wire.
Some of the profile pictures are pretty strange and some of them aren’t very useful. My picture has me in the foreground, and the Grand Canyon in the background. Still, if I didn’t know it was me, I wouldn’t recognize me in the picture. One of my friends apparently took his own picture, not with a tripod, but by holding the camera at arm’s length. That didn’t really work so well. Another looks kind of like an 18th-century pirate in his picture since he’s wearing a head scarf and the picture is taken on a boat. Of all my friends, the profile picture I like the best is the one of that closely resembles Grizzly Adams.
The Facebook search engine could be a lot more useful. The thing I find really strange is you can search for a person’s name and get a pages of results and nothing near the top seems to have anything to do with that name. How exactly does that work? At least it could tell you something more about a name you search for than just the name and the listing of their friends. I’d like it if you could click on and enlarge profile pictures that show up with a search. That way, you’d have a better chance of recognizing the person in the picture. I’d like it if you could do the same thing to pictures of people in lists of friends and for the same reason.
I know Facebook is a business and it is to the owners’ advantage to have as many members as possible. Still, I wouldn’t want to let the program search my contact list for those people who are on their system and then invite them all to be my friends. There are people on my contact list I wouldn’t want to annoy and a few I wouldn’t want to annoy me.
It doesn’t surprise me that people of both major political parties follow politicians who don’t share their political views. It does surprise me a little that politicians from both major political parties follow other politicians who don’t share their political views.
I don’t know how much it costs and I don’t have anything to sell, but if I had something to sell, it seems to me ads on Facebook could be extremely targeted. So for some things, it’s got to be an effective marketing tool.
I have 14 friends so far. If I get to feeling strongly, one way or the other, about Facebook, I’ll let you know.