Sunday, 6 September 2015

How To Make Facebook Fun

A new report out this week has found that facebook can make people feel very sad. Utah Valley University who conducted the study found that the fact  we all post up our very best pictures and often only report good news actually made others feel inferior. Almost like standing on the sidelines of a great party you haven't been invited to.
Its only facebook
Ive been a "facebooker" for a few years now. I remember when only one of my friends was a member and my profile picture was the only photo for my account. The popularity of the site has been quite staggering and in that time Ive made every mistake and been every facebook cliche going. Here are my tips for enjoying facebook with your sanity and self esteem intact.


Choose Your "Friends" Wisely
We all have to present different versions of ourselves to fit certain situations.
The wild haired gin monster our friends see down the pub singing Heart songs might not be the same person who attends school parents evening for example (and if it is you need to maybe take a time out piss head)  it astounds me then that people have a one size fits all facebook account. Really? 
So you are going to let some random friend of a friend of someones cousin look through pictures of your kids? listen to you moan about your runny arse or weird crush on Professor Brian Cox? I have two facebook accounts, one I share with the world and his wife-Its my flotsam and jetsam profile,my facebook commune. I think of it as the social media version of when the  Beatles went to hang out with maharishi I don't care who joins it and I keep life on their bright, breezy and silly. 
My personal facebook page is a rather more dark twisty place. I would like to say its a more exclusive club  but I'm sure the twenty or so friends who are "lucky" enough to have access to it rather wish I would burn it down for the insurance.  I bitch about work, moan about the gas bill and enjoy my mates taking the piss out of me. I learnt this lesson the hard way. Facebook grew so quickly and at first it seemed silly and over complicated to have two profiles. However as more and more people joined my page (often as a result of having met me through work or events) I started to feel my privacy was being slightly compromised and more importantly the privacy of my daughter. I'm not obsessive about this and will still post up the odd pic of the fruit of my loins on my work page but generally I keep family stuff on my personal page where it belongs-to bore senseless my twenty or so "real" mates.
Having two profiles means if someone you really don't want knowing your business puts through a request you can divert them through to your open page which is still you, and funny and lovely but doesn't share the more personal stuff such as how much you hate your boss and think she looks like Greg Wallace from Masterchef or are skiving because you have a hangover.


Vent At Your Peril
As Ive already mentioned I love to vent on my personal facebook page. I work from home, have no water cooler moments and quite honestly am quite a moaning Minnie anyway. What I no longer do is vent on my "open" facebook page. if something has really upset or enraged you having the sympathy of a thousand strangers is not going to make it better. Leave that to the real cranks like the Daily Mails Liz Jones. 
Its too easy to try and make a point using facebook and its so passive aggressive.  I see it all the time. people slagging off ex boyfriends. saying how shit everyone in their life is or having a massive argument all from the relative safety of their PC. its always worth thinking would I say this to someones face? If the answer is no-press delete. Ive only had one real argument on facebook.It wasn't a very impressive spat, no Crystal/Alexis wrestle it was more low budget in a Sally Webster from Corrie type of way. Afterwards I felt totally ashamed of myself and hated how excited it seemed to make other people.If ever there was a lesson in taking a breath before typing that was it. I vowed there and then never to let it happen again and Ive stuck to it (apart from to berate my husband for buying own brand soup-but hey I'm only human)


Be A Good FB Friend
Despite all the negative press facebook gets its still an amazing way to keep up with friends and family and get to know new people safely. Ive read some really snarky pieces of journalism saying how people shouldn't be baby bores with their photos or post up inane status like "love my life its the best" to this I say fooey. The joy of social media is that no one can tell you what to say or do. I love looking at pictures of friends offspring, pets, house renovations. Its the small things that make the world go round. 
Know When To Take A Break
The thing to understand about facebook is that much like knowing when to leave a party there are times when a week or so off is fine. If you are displaying slightly stalkerish tendencies,spending far too much time looking at photos of people you barely know, if your closest friend is someone you have never met in the flesh, if you are actually saying LOL  then turn off the laptop, go for a walk and speak to a real person.It will at least give you something to update your status about.





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4 comments:

  1. I've been on FB for 4 years, I only have 1 account but I'm really careful what I put on. I never slag anyone off or complain.... well not much! I have very close friends, friends from school that I haven't seen for years & new friends I've yet to meet. I think if you're careful FB can be great fun & help promote my craft group! :) x

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  2. I too have one account - well - unless you are counting my blog FB page. Most people who I am friends with on *my* page I know personally - or have at least met once :)

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  3. I have a personal account and page for my blog but that's it. I just don't air my dirty laundry on the internet. I know some folks that have started massive wars with family and friends due to things they've said on fb and it's pretty ridiculous. I complain sometimes but only about silly things like how I totally screwed up my vacuum yesterday when I sucked up my daughter's blanket. ha! I think it's crappy when people use fb as a way to try to get sympathy or to bash other people. That's what private messages or face-to-face talk is for!

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  4. Oh BB, You're very funny, I enjoy popping in here

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