Part 1: A look into my Facebook World and Twitterverse
I can’t imagine life before Facebook.
No really, it’s a blur and I vaguely remember sneaking onto MSN to chat with my friends before mom screamed down for the phone line. And at the time it was the coolest thing – the place to discuss the latest Survivor episode and who is going to the St. Paul’s dance.
I also vaguely remember creating my Facebook account over four years ago. I had no clue what it really was and then I was panicked I wouldn’t have enough friends. Now I’m connected to 857 people and the endless connections they have…
I’m so comfortable with Facebook now. Every time I go on the internet I check out my profile and now I have it linked to my phone. All day I’m connected with family in South Africa, contacts for work (yes, I’ve been hired over Facebook), I’ve also fallen in love over Facebook with people I knew through acquaintances.
But Facebook can hurt, after my last relationship status change I received messages of rude inquiring minds, people digging into matters not of their concern. So I made a few rules for myself regarding my account
1. NO relationship status. I don’t want to be the back-up girlfriend because you “noticed” I was single.
2. Only update my status with news – i.e. I don’t bother with “OMGGGGG 2 MIDTERMS TOMORROW FML.”
3. Could my mom see this? Alright.
4. Don’t use Facebook as a dating site, if it happens cool.
5. Never add people.
The last one is confusing. Very rarely do I actively add people unless asked or necessary (i.e. school group member). As such, I’m open to accepting friendships, checking out the profile and deciding if I want this person available to view mine. I’ve never added someone because they’re hott or to spy; although, I have been in the situation where an ex created a false account to be my friend – and view my profile (well, I figured it out).
So what do I use it for now?
When I joined CreComm I panicked a little – does the job world forgive misguided uses of Facebook? When I started, I probably wrote the most random stuff so what comments did my smart ass 16-year old self make? Pictures… I have so many, are any unsuitable? Generally my social scene is one I’m comfortable with people seeing, but some are trying to bury their Facebook past.
Two days ago I received this mass message from a friend:
“Hi, so you may or may not know I am applying for the Winnipeg Police Service this year and in doing so I am deleting my Facebook to give myself the best chance.”
The person went on to give their contact information to those who are interested. The problem is, even if you delete an account the information is still online SO BE ACCOUNTABLE FOR YOUR ACTIVITIES – because comments and pictures can be found on Google. To test my theory I googled “Daniella Ponticelli” images…
So even though I use Facebook as a means of maintaining relationships, it’s still an open relationship with the world-wide web. This is important to note. Privacy settings can be changed in accordance, but as someone actively working with social media and hoping to create connections, mine are fairly relaxed.
I was so loyal to Facebook that when I was told to make a Twitter account for CreComm, it felt like cheating. But if Facebook is the best friend, Twitter is the go-to friend.
No way is it the same. I follow organizations and people I’m really interested in. I’ve never bothered joining fan pages on Facebook because of all the annoying updates – but on Twitter it’s up to you if you want to pay attention to the person’s updates. I’ve been tweeted at by people who genuinely enjoy the same interests or enjoy my opinions.
While Twitter can be abused, I use it for my quick news headlines – I recently followed the live tweets regarding Egypt. For school, all the instructors and students have an account. It’s about linking and sharing in 140 characters. And so what if you’re dating Jo from high school.
Twitter allows for glimpses into the lives of people you find interesting. Like how Deepak Chopra feels while waiting in line at security. I’ve had friends who’ve mentioned bands they’d like to see and received tickets. It’s whatever you need it to be – as in if you need to find someone with a specific interest, you’re bound to connect with them through a hashtag.
Next Post: how to effectively communicate strategically using Social Media
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