Facebook was founded in 2004 purely for Harvard University students, and it took off from there, becoming accessible to the entire world’s population in 2006. Facebook now has over 1.23 billion monthly users, or about one-sixth of the world’s population. Far Out!
Unlike other social media platforms that have faded away, Facebook shows no signs of going anywhere.
Facebook’s Mission? ”To give people the power to share and make the world more open and connected.”
Well it certainly does do that. But not everyone is entirely comfortable with ‘being on Facebook’. (I can’t convince my Mum to join so she can enjoy some of the funnies that go around!)
For what it’s worth, here’s my in-a-nutshell take on the pros and cons :
Reasons to Like Facebook
- It’s a wonderful (and free and instant) way to ‘keep in touch’ (no matter the distance), build relationships and feel close to those you like hanging out with, by sharing words, photos and videos. And you can seek out old friends and acquaintances. Last year my husband enjoyed a 30yr school reunion, made possible with Facebook.
- Facebook ‘Groups’ are a terrific way to network, collaborate and discuss with people of similar interests. Neighbourhoods, students, hobbyists, business groups (to name a few) can generate a treasure trove of information or stir up action in an instant. Many a stray dog has been returned home, community events arranged, funds raised for good causes (and this list goes on), via Facebook.
- If used properly, Facebook is an awesome tool for businesses – large, medium and small – to promote their products and services and can be a valuable part of an online marketing strategy.
Reasons to Unlike Facebook
- Although Facebook has simplified the process for setting privacy for users, inexperienced users can get the settings wrong, leaving themselves open to sharing information with those they didn’t intend to. Yes, your employer (current or prospective) may get to see that inappropriate post.
- In a world of wonderful people, there are “trolls” – people who appear to delight in being obnoxious and offensive online. Bullies use the online playground to spread their poison, which has resulted in some terrible tragedies.
- Being compulsively addicted to ‘checking Facebook’ or playing game apps on Facebook consumes a LOT of time that could be used on more productive pursuits, like studying and other personal productivity activities.