Monday, July 22, 2013

Facebook, the Mecca of Social Networking

Close your eyes; imagine life 10 years ago. Did you know anyone in Egypt? Australia? Japan? Most of what Americans knew about those countries was learned in our history classes. We had no real connection with anyone other than people in our own little part of the world. We didn't know, on a daily basis, what was happening all over the world. Time Zones never really affected us unless we had travel plans. Socializing, as we know it, has seen a huge growth in merely 10 years.

Facebook came to life in 2004 and quickly drew us in much the way a new toy does. Many of us start our day by logging into Facebook from our laptop or cell phone. We have this overwhelming desire to see what happened overnight, who has a birthday, and what the weather will be for the day. We log in, scroll through all the post we just aren't interested in… come on, you know you have them… and find the information we seek.

We scan through the many pictures of children, special events, and pets. We “like” the photos and comment on the ones that really catch our eyes. We feel a sudden urge to post the most simple thoughts on our mind from an emoticon expressing our emotions to an “ugh it’s Monday”. We know when, where, and how everyone’s vacation was and always wish that were us. We have the friends that seem to have duo personalities posting religious messages in one post then 30 minutes later posting some inappropriate comment that sounds like it came from an entirely different person. We know what restaurants are good and the many new recipes that everyone wants to try but never has the time.

With social networking we become so enthralled or appalled by it that we sometimes forget that in posting on Facebook, just as with any other form of communication, we must show restraint and use proper etiquette. Be mindful of what and how often you post. There are actually sites you can visit on the internet such as Essential Facebook Etiquette: 10 Do’s and Dont’s (by Michael Poh) and Top 10 Things Not to POST on FACEBOOK! (by Jo Blitz Escotal) that can help you learn how to be a good Facebook friend. 

Keep in mind that not every thought has to be shared, not every picture is cute, the obvious doesn't always need stating, and for security reasons there are personal things you just shouldn't share on the internet. Take the initiative and learn how to use your security settings on Facebook. Create groups you like to share with others who like similar posts. Hide those posts you do not want to see on a daily basis. Make your Facebook a fun and enjoyable use of your time.

Belinda @ Kids Matter

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