Monday, September 21, 2009

Face to Face with Facebook


I was a reluctant participant in Facebook. I actually opened my profile there more than a year before I did anything with it. It was the final gasp of Y!360 that more or less pushed me into looking for alternate social networks.

It's a jungle out there. And Profiles, the Y!360 replacement, was not keeping its promise to be better. Blogger was being better; in fact best for blogging. But it just didn't give that sense of close connection 360 had with quick comments. Tried Twitter. I don't like to reduce my life to 140 characters. And frankly the people that began following me (even months after I stopped tweeting) scare me.

One of my first forays into Facebook resulted in a major malware infection. (Near as my computer nerd can figure it came through the download of Javascript used to upload images.) Facebook does not vet all its cute little applications so for months I followed the 5 second rule. Check in for action, check out, touch nothing.

Now I am on Facebook more and more because of friends. And I have one application (Scrabble) I have found safe. And an alternate way to upload photos which does not require downloading malware. Actually I was beginning to quite enjoy myself until all the glitches began to show up.

I had developed quite a tolerance for glitches on Y!360. But maybe the been there and done that has lowered my patience. On days, like today, when Facebook seems to be going insane I find it better to just log out of the social network before I throw my computer screen across the room. I am already tiptoeing through the minefield of applications to begin with, and searching for meaningful communication amid Farmtowns and Mafia wars. I spend an inordinate amount of screen time "ignoring" all the endless requests to join people in one cause or another. Quite frankly I do not give a damn about most.

But I do like my friends there. And I enjoy the two photo groups and Book Nerds that I belong to. I am becoming rapidly addicted to Scrabble and would play more if I got the notifications that it was my turn. Some opine that it is all the applications that are slowing down Facebook and creating all the glitches in notifications and postings.

Maybe it is time for two Facebooks: Facebook I and Facebook II. The could interface just briefly - a bridge that allowed passage of people and not applications. Facebook I could be the one we have all come to know (some hate and some love), and Facebook II could be for the serious communicators. Sort of a Facebook for Nerds. It would have the ability to link to serious blogs, the great photo groups, and the groups for serious discussion, plus a selection of board and card games like Scrabble and Hearts. Wouldn't Mah Jong be nice?

Hey, it is a suggestion. But keep in mind that social networking only works if you can network. Once that ability is hindered in any way the social circle goes elsewhere. Many a coffee shop and singles club knows that.

8 comments:

  1. You should block those applications you don't want. Then you won't even get notifications. You should get a "Block" option when you get a request. If not, you can find it through the "Browse More Applications" option. If you get to the main FB page for the app, you'll see a Block option there.

    All these glitches lately are frustrating. But I'm sticking with it. It's the right format for networking and fills a different need than than blogs. And it is desireable simply from the sheer numbers of people who continue to join.

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  2. Becky, I have blocked, hidden, ignored, sent notifications to friends to not bother.

    I have pared down my notifications to photos, discussion threads, messages, and scrabble. But Facebook (and some application crazy friends) continue to ignore me. I already avoid Home page like the plague because every time I think I have it all sorted out there is some new frenzy over an application there.

    Next step delete friends. Step after that (especially if I don't get the notifications I want to get) is to delete Facebook.

    Anyone know how to delete Twitter. I cannot seem to find a cancel option there?

    And while on morning frustrations: Trying to get the dogs to understand we walk when I want to walk.

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  3. Oh, and Yahoo mail! Nine more days and Mercury in Retrograde goes direct.

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  4. LOL. Stay with it Jacqui and if I'm one of those who send requests or gifts sorry. When I get any I don't want I just click ignore. I must say I haven't had any problems probably because of the time difference.

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  5. Para 2: re Blogger:
    "But it just didn't give that sense of close connection 360 had with quick comments."

    I have been thinking of this for months and this weekend, (after all the cleaning - see Blog!) I was reading some of my 360 blogs. Thank God I kept them because Yahoo didn't! A real sadness came over me. I was struck by the in depth topics we used to write about and the comments that would come leading to discussions and sharing of experiences plus the daily interaction we all had with one another which I find is now lacking. I am not getting the same satisfaction on FB or Blogger. Whilst most of us are still around and we have new friends too which is wonderful, I miss those who did not come to Blogger with us. I miss Frani (who is doing wonderful things on Multiply) and the butler. Cheyenne seems to have disappeared too. Some of my 360 friend have disappeared altogether although they may well be on Profiles but I just cannot be bothered with that site.

    It's all too much at the moment and I know, I'm having a whinge!

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  6. It is probably because of military upbringing, which you shared Bee, that I am reminded that friends come and go. It doesn't always have to do with whether you are on the same base or half a world away.

    And friends as mysteriously pop back in to our lives. And often the reason we disconnect is me. Life is a journey and so are friendships. Interestingly enough I have re-connected to a couple former friends here and on FB.

    Cheyanne is not getting on line at all. The Butler is so exhausted when she comes home from work she often doesn't. We all seem currently rather too busy to blog as much but winter will come and we will all be stuck inside going bonkers. Yes, I think blogging can be seasonal.

    Our platform choices can be based on personality and where we are in our lives at that moment. I really enjoyed Frani but I won't go to Multiply to stay connected anymore than I could have stayed on one base when my father got shipped out.

    I do miss you not being around more and The Butler but I figure when you have the time if you are so inclined you will be.

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  7. I continue to detest Facebook with a passion and will not create an account there.

    In terms of Yahoo 360, I think we rode the wave of blogging novelty on it and it was great to be part of it. However, I think its demise may have been a good excuse for some people to leave the blogosphere - it may have been a phase they went through?

    Let's give Blogger a chance. Slowly but surely, old friends are surfacing. I had a couple more join my blogger list...

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  8. I too have connected with friends here. But I have also connected with them in Facebook. I don't play the games except for Scrabble to which I admit a growing addiction.

    And I love the book group and the two photo groups I belong to. But I am a blogging animal. The old 360 awakened the writer in me and Blogger is a great place to carry that on.

    I also like following and hit dashboard a couple times a day to check out what my friends have written about.

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