Archive for ‘Facebook’

March 20, 2011

Picture (Un)Perfect

We all remember Myspace, right? If you don’t, then you’re a lucky one. Myspace was one of the first popular social networking sites. It quickly dropped of the radar after Facebook was introduced, and already had a questionable reputation for allowing too much unsolicited contact between older and younger members.

In any event, one aspect of Myspace we can’t seem to shake are unfortunate profile pictures. While having these aren’t necessarily rude, they won’t do anything for your popularity or credibility for that matter.

Instead of telling you what you guys should do, I figured I’d give some examples of what to avoid.

THE DUCK FACE
BrittDubs shows an example of Duck Face
WHERE’S WALDO
Can you find BrittDubs
NOT YOU
Screenshot of the movie Kazaam
BATHROOM/MIRROR
BrittDubs at Rest Stop
CLASSIC MYSPACE POSE
BrittDubs Myspace Post
  • Duck Face – A picture in which the chief goal is to make your lips as pouty as possible. AntiDuckFace is a website with no shortage of examples of this one.
  • Where’s Waldo – A picture where it is difficult to pinpoint where you are
  • Not you – A picture that doesn’t actually depict you. It can be anything from a cartoon to scenery
  • Bathroom/Mirror – A picture taken in a bathroom/and or taken in a mirror (most often taken with a cell phone)
  • Classic Myspace Pose – A picture that is a self portrait taken from above. Notice the lack of picture rotation

Happy Picture Taking!


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February 13, 2011

Digi-Dating

Happy Valentine’s Day!

Cartoon couple cuddled, looking at a heart

Plenty of Fish, E-Harmony, Match.com, etc. Those websites might be familiar to you as popular dating websites. That list, however, is far from complete – the number of dating sites is exhaustive, each offering to serve specific needs (JDate – “The Premier Jewish Community Online for Dating Jewish Singles,” for instance). The prevalence of those sites and others has even sparked interest in academia.

In addition to the websites to help you find a date, there is no shortage of ways to communicate with that date digitally – texting, instant messaging, emailing, skyping. It certainly is easier to keep in touch with others, butwhether or not technology’s influence on matters of the heart will ultimately be positive remains to be seen. What about new dating dilemmas? That, however, isn’t exactly the question I’m looking to answer. I’m more concerned about how to stay cordial in the face of ever changing tools of communication.

Traditional social codes have been supplanted by choices, risks and uncertainties that are a component of the consumer society. – Anthony Giddens as cited in “The Formation of Social Rules for Digital Interactions

Kristina Grish’s book The Joy of Text – Dating, Mating, and Techno-Relating, is interested in just that – how the rules of etiquette having changed. Her advice does seem to be geared solely to women. Sorry fellas. A more balanced approach may be found on the Dating Digital Podcast.

FINDING A DATE ON A DATING SITE

  • Have a good idea of what you’re looking for. Romance, Friendship, or something else.
  • Be upfront about who you are. Don’t “fudge” personal details or be misleading.
  • There is no need to post all of your personal information.
    • After you send something out, you don’t have control over who sees it or how it is dealt with.
  • Don’t feel obligated to go on a date with every person that shows interest.
  • Avoid stalking.

ON A DATE

  • Keep an open mind.
  • Don’t call or text excessively. Focus on your date – not your technology (phone, iPod, etc).
  • Be respectful of your date’s concerns, opinions, and beliefs.

GENERAL TIPS

  • Don’t rely only on texting, emailing, and the like if you can help it.
  • Understand that tone can be lost in the text format.
  • Lack of instant responses doesn’t mean lack of interest. Be patient.
  • Keep the details of your relationship off Facebook if you want that information private.
  • Don’t update your social media with disparaging things. If you have an issue, go directly to your partner.
  • Break up in person. (Unless your situation makes this impossible).
  • Beware of sexting –

The act of sending sexually explicit messages or photographs, primarily between mobile phones – Wikipedia.

¤ Keep these private. (A friend of mine gave me her old phone and forgot to delete a few texts of a rather personal nature).

¤ Make sure the recipient actually wants content of a sexually explicit nature.

Caroline Giegerich also wrote an article for Huffington Post with more helpful tips. Nobody wants technology to sabotage their relationship.

♥ The main thing to remember is to be yourself and be open & honest.


(Graphic via The Digital Scratch Pad, shared via Creative Commons)


February 6, 2011

To Unfriend or not to Unfriend

Unfriending or defriending has often been hailed as one of the major Facebook don’ts. To unfriend/defriend means to remove (delete) a user from a social networking site. It’s dominant use is in conjunction with Facebook. In the interest of full disclosure, I will state that I unfriend Facebook friends regularly. Every couple of months, I go through my friends list and make cuts where I see fit. I keep my friend list right around 300 people. Most, however,  find unfriending to be petty and passive aggressive. I agree that the action can be quite rude when done impulsively and/or for the wrong reasons.

There are however, some general guidelines to follow while using Facebook. A quick Google search of “Facebook Etiquette” will yield several pages of results. YourTango even offers the following video :

The following tips are a compilation of my own opinions.

FRIENDING

  • Don’t feel obligated to add everyone who requests to be your friend.
  • By the same token, you don’t have to add everyone you know. Finding your best from kindergarten doesn’t necessitate cyber friendship.
  • If a friend is using Facebook in a way you disagree with (updating too often for example), then try to hide them before completely removing them.
  • Don’t be afraid of the Great Facebook Purge, but be weary of trivial removals.
  • Give yourself a least a day before friending people you’ve just met.

PHOTOS

  • Respect requests for photos to be taken down.
  • Tag your friends with caution.
  • Be conscious of taking pictures that may eventually end up on Facebook. If you won’t be proud of the content later, don’t take the picture.
  • Cropping and captioning will improve how your pictures look.
  • There is no need to have repeats of pictures. One is enough.
  • Be courteous and sincere when commenting.
  • Don’t use pictures without permission.

UPDATING YOUR STATUS

  • Do so with a purpose. There probably isn’t a reason to update more than 3 times a day.
  • Don’t be cryptic or use your statuses as a conduit for passive aggressiveness.
  • Credit quotes and music lyrics.

GENERAL TIPS

  • Know and understand your privacy settings.
  • Utilize lists (for coworkers, family members, exes, etc).
  • Don’t comment on a friend’s conversation with a person you don’t know.
  • Limit lengthy photo comment and wall posts conversations.
  • Nobody likes spam. (Games, messages, group requests, etc).
  • Try to avoid profanity/crude jokes on other people’s walls. You never know who might have access.
  • Facebook is a public website. Keep personal information to a minimum.
  • Take conflicts offline. Otherwise the fall-out may be disastrous (or spawn out of control and make you look foolish).

Hopefully this list makes your Facebook experience more enjoyable. And if all else fails, you can always deactivate.