Facebook celebrated their tenth anniversary yesterday, February 4. My newsfeed was immediately filled with the 62 second movies from my Facebook friends. I was immediately fascinated. I knew that I spent at least a half an hour a day engaging with my ‘Facebook’ friends. On some days, the time is much longer, but my world has expanded since 2008 when I ‘joined’ Facebook with the encouragement of my daughter.
I quickly realized several things from these one-minute movies.
1. Most of My Friends Joined in 2008 or 2009
My daughter built my page for me after I made a comment about missing my high school friends. While she had only been out of high school for 4 years, she said she stayed connected with friend through Facebook. I wonder how many of my friends joined for the same reasons. Of course, it could be that Facebook was gaining momentum and we were feeling left out of the excitement.
2. Most Movies Contain Pictures of Family
Facebook pictures on the movies tended to be full of pictures of family. I am a grandma; so naturally, a good number of pictures are of my dear Miss Aiden. I also have shared older pictures from my parents with an Uncle via Facebook. I am not certain how Facebook decided which pictures to show, but for the most part then define my Facebook friends – even my physical friends.
3. Hobbies and Groups are Important
Since 2004, Toastmasters International has played a huge role in my life. I thought it was interesting that my first pictures were of the newly elected leaders of Toastmasters in my district (yes, I was included). The next pictures was one with the 2007-2008 International President, Jana Barnhill and I. Mixed in with pictures of my family where pictures of my Toastmasters family.
4. Pets are Family Too
As I watched my movie, I saw pictures of my pets. I posted the passing of my mom on Facebook, but I also posted the passing of my pets. I noticed that most of my friends also posted pictures of their pets. I have cried over posting from friends about the passing of their pets and it was great to see them in the moves. David, I finally met Roddy in your movie!
5. Bragging Is Good
As I watched movie after movie (I have over 1200 Facebook Friends), I noticed that many of the posts were ‘brags’ about accomplishments. Mine were about my daughter, but I saw many about the member’s accomplishments: winning contests, completing a major goal, earning their Distinguished Toastmaster, being elected to an office.
6. Facebook Is Great at Filtering Out Sad Events
I admit that I was afraid that my most popular posts would contain items from when my mom passed away or when we found out my granddaughter had cancer. I was interested to find that Facebook must have a great filtering methodology because they were not in evidence. The only evidence is a post of Aiden coming home and a picture of her before he surgery with Matilda her new doll. I found the same filtering in friend’s movies. Great job Facebook, who would share the bad news all over again?
Facebook has changed how we interact with friends. In my five years on Facebook, I have built strong friendships. I can connect with someone I met at a conference and manage to stay in touch. I can share the awesomeness of life and the sadness of life. Thank you Facebook.