Tuesday, March 27, 2012

Facebook 101

Facebook was founded in 2004 by Harvard student Mark Zuckerberg and his college roommates.  It was probably founded in their dorm room since I doubt there are many garages on the Harvard campus.  Why I am telling you this?  You’ve probably already seen the movie. 

I haven’t yet seen the movie, but I’ve finally gone onto facebook.com and set up an account.  Before I did so, I took the time to read all the privacy information and learned how I can control what is on my Facebook site.  This was a good thing.  The security geeks that I‘ve worked with for so many years worried (and continue to worry) about how easy it was for hackers to get personally-identifiable information (PII) from Facebook pages.  Turns out I didn’t have to put too much PII in at all, and I don’t have to display any of it – even to my “friends.”

And friends – wow!  The algorithms that Zuckerberg and company created are just amazing.  I had found 19 friends in the half-hour it took me to set up my profile!  As of today, I have 74.  In contrast, it took me weeks to get 16 followers on Twitter. 

I didn’t even have to consult the kids.  My daughter signed up right away to be my Facebook friend.  I don’t expect to hear from my son, though.  What self-respecting 25 year old man wants his mother as a Facebook friend? 

This could be scary time consuming.  In fact, one of my new “friends” warned me not to become obsessed.  I’ll do my best.

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