Monday, August 04, 2008

The Facebook Phenomenon

"We have technology, finally, that for the first time in human history allows people to really maintain rich connections with much larger numbers of people. " ~Pierre Omidyar


Most of you probably know what they are - online social networking sites. Places in cyberworld where you can put up your picture, a profile, and collect friends and contact others with the same interests/background/job/kinky pleasures.

For the most part, I've avoided them, in part because most of my students belong to them, and I'd rather not hang out in the same place as the teens in my life (no offense, but I don't hang around at the mall or the movie theater or the skate park anymore either).

But I decided to create a basic Facebook profile recently because it was supposed to be a step above MySpace, and because some of my author friends kept bugging me to. So I did.

The funny thing is, every time I open my email now there's another "friend request" or "bumper sticker request" or "message written on your wall." I don't even know what some of these things are. But I do sense that I could spend an awful lot of time building my profile and adding pictures and personalized songs and listing my favorites books and movies and tracking "what I'm doing right now" each time I log on.

I don't think I have the time.

The only good thing is that in the last 2 days, I've rediscovered 3 friends from college I'd lost touch with years ago. And that's pretty cool. So maybe I'll keep my Facebook profile a little longer. But just a warning to anyone out there who's thinking about friending me or sending me a card/gift/wall/message/dedicated song...I'm sort of clueless when it comes to keeping up!

What do you think - anyone out there a diehard Facebook or MySpace fan? And do you do it for networking, building your author name, or procrastinating?? :)


Liz said...

I have a Myspace and facebook pages but I mostly joined so I could see what my son was up to. So I'm pretty clueless too.

Marianne Arkins said...

Facebook is a HUGE timesuck... but, I love to go in a pat my virtual puppy when I need to relax *G*

And, I figure I'm keeping my brain fresh when I play Bubble Words. Right? Say right.

And I have myspace and Facebook for all the reasons you mentioned.

chandlermariecraig said...

I mean, I'm 22, so yeah, Facebook is a big deal. I think it's a little less of a big deal than it was about a year ago, but I still check it at least once a day!

I'd say most people don't mess with the "applications" though. You can disable the email messages telling you that people are sending you bumper stickers etc.
Unless you really love that stuff and then def keep it!!

Liza said...

I have a facebook page, but am pretty clueless too. About the only thing I do is update photos and send flair to my close friends and nieces.

The Blonde Duck said...

I'm actually scared to get on Facebook/ Myspace. At my age, you'd think I'd love it. I was a freshman in college when it became the new thing (back then you could only be in college to join.) I never did b/c everyone else was and therefore I refused to.

Now, I just don't want people from high school to find me. I didn't like who I was back then and like to keep my past where it should stay--in the past. But everyone keeps telling me what a good marketing tool it is, so now I'm waffling...

Dru said...

I joined facebook because people were telling me about it and I found it better than myspace and like you I rediscovered friends.

I also like the games and when work is slow, as a time waster, it does come in handy.

The one thing I did was disable the notification by email.

Devon Gray said...

MySpace has been great for networking for me. I've stumbled upon a few opportunities I wouldn't have known about otherwise. I try not to be too obsessive about checking it, though. Easy to do when you are procrastinating!

windycindy said...

I am not a huge fan of either one! I would rather be visiting sites like yours, than myface or facebook! Thanks, Cindi

Allie Boniface said...

Oh, great - there are GAMES on Facebook?? One more thing I can spend time doing besides writing...

Judy Thomas said...

All of the above. I like Facebook better than Myspace, but other than that... I don't think there's that much difference. Have I bought a book because I've friended somebody on either? Not yet, but I do have books on my TBR list that I wouldn't have it they weren't there.

And.. game... omg, I love the games!!!

Sarah-Jane Lehoux said...

Facebook was fun in the beginning, but the novelty wears off after the first little bit. Rediscovering friends is great, but you soon rediscover why you parted ways with them in the first place.

I haven't tried out MySpace yet. It scares the bejezus out of me!