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  1. #1
    5 Star Lounger
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    My sister apparently just joined Facebook and I got an email asking if I wanted to enroll so I could see her pictures, videos, etc. Is Facebook safe to join? What precautions, if any, should be taken. Thanks for your input.

  2. #2
    Plutonium Lounger
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    See Facebook Safety for Facebook's own take on it.

    As with all social networking sites, be very careful about what information you make public, and about whom you make a "friend".

  3. #3
    Super Moderator jscher2000's Avatar
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    [quote name='trebor' post='772419' date='26-Apr-2009 15:34']My sister apparently just joined Facebook and I got an email asking if I wanted to enroll so I could see her pictures, videos, etc. Is Facebook safe to join? What precautions, if any, should be taken.[/quote]
    In addition to the wise advice from Hans, a few thoughts. First, be aware that like many sites, Facebook may encourage you to open your email address book to their system to recruit your contacts. That's probably why you got an email. This is completely optional and I suggest opting out initially. Second, the third party applications that abound on various Facebook pages may not be completely trustworthy. I recommend slow adoption of applications, and careful study of their individual data usage policies. Third, you may find that Facebook starts to consume a lot of your time. As people find and connect with you, you get incorporated into larger networks of "friends," and you get more invitations and updates. You may need to disable certain kinds of notifications to maintain sanity in your email mailbox.

  4. #4
    Plutonium Lounger
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    [quote name='jscher2000' post='772429' date='26-Apr-2009 20:23']As people find and connect with you, you get incorporated into larger networks of "friends," and you get more invitations and updates.[/quote]
    Amen to that! I first went to Facebook quite some time ago because a fellow Lounger (who shall remain nameless) told me to take a look at his "page." Fortunately for me, he has never brought any junk my way, maybe because I've not posted anything on his pages.

    But, when I got an invitation from a former co-worker, WOW! Did it spread like a case of the flu! These days, I've not been back to Facebook and trash any invitations that I get. Be careful out there...

  5. #5
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    [quote name='trebor' post='772419' date='26-Apr-2009 23:34']My sister apparently just joined Facebook and I got an email asking if I wanted to enroll so I could see her pictures, videos, etc. Is Facebook safe to join? What precautions, if any, should be taken. Thanks for your input.[/quote]
    "Is Facebook safe?" is a similar question to "Is the internet safe?" - the answer is exactly the same. As long as you're careful who you share information with (and what you share) and what applications you install, you'll be absolutely fine. I love Facebook, it's a brilliant platform and a great way of getting in touch with old friends and keeping in touch with distant friends and family. I would hate to be without it.
    Waggers
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  6. #6
    Uranium Lounger
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    [quote name='trebor' post='772419' date='26-Apr-2009 16:34']What precautions, if any, should be taken.[/quote]In addition to the good advice from Hans & Jefferson:
    If you join, go straight into Settings | Privacy Settings; the defaults are mostly OK, but under Settings | Privacy Settings | Search consider changing the Search visiblity to something more restricted than "Everyone". And under Settings | Privacy Settings | Profile examine and set the options how you want (you can blacklist anyone under the Customize drop-down Option).
    -John ... I float in liquid gardens
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  7. #7
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    [quote name='trebor' post='772419' date='26-Apr-2009 23:34']My sister apparently just joined Facebook and I got an email asking if I wanted to enroll so I could see her pictures, videos, etc. Is Facebook safe to join? What precautions, if any, should be taken. Thanks for your input.[/quote]

    I wouldn't touch it with a barge pole. I guess I'm just a grouch but I dislike and distrust such sites. I think they increase the possibility of computer infection/security compromise.

    Chris (Hunt)

  8. #8
    Uranium Lounger viking33's Avatar
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    [quote name='Cah' post='772810' date='28-Apr-2009 22:22']I wouldn't touch it with a barge pole. I guess I'm just a grouch but I dislike and distrust such sites. I think they increase the possibility of computer infection/security compromise.

    Chris (Hunt)[/quote]

    Right on, Chris.
    My sentiments exactly!!!
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  9. #9
    Bronze Lounger IanWilson's Avatar
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    I am on Facebook. After the initial enthusiasm, I find that I don't use it very much, but it is a way of communicating and keeping in touch with some friends and acquaintances. I do like being able to put photo albums there and see friends' and family's photos there. I agree totally with the advice not to share your email address or contacts and I have not made any personal contact details like address and phone number public. I also created a separate email address for the purpose before I joined and I only use it for Facebook. Facebook members don't get to see it, it's just that the Facebook system communicates with me through it. So far, none of the spam reaching me has been sent to that address (not that I get very much anyway).

    Ian

  10. #10
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    [quote name='jscher2000' post='772429' date='26-Apr-2009 22:23']Third, you may find that Facebook starts to consume a lot of your time.[/quote]

    That's a very important reason I'm not on Facebook. Free time does not precisely abound, and I think social networking at the Facebook level has a significant superficial component. I see it in friends and workmates, who seem to be condemned to a constant drain on their free time each time someone uploads a photoset or invites them to play a game or just to check their "friends"' walls and drop a comment. I do think there might be a good use for photo sharing, but our societies seems to have been taken over by vanity. Is it so important to see every single photoset of every single person you may happen to know? You are probably leaving more important stuff aside to do that.

    On the other hand, many people have become increasingly anxious to shoot a new collection just to upload it and share with the rest. Are people likely to watch every single picture you take? Furthermore, are YOU likely to watch all the pictures you take in the rest of your life? Lots of folks I know abide by the "the more the better" rule and fill their disks with uncountable photo collections. If you think carefully, it's highly unlikely you will find the time to see all those photos again! I know it's hard to refrain from shooting beautiful landscapes or that funny face or whatever, but I believe a photograph has a purpose: that it can be seen again later. It's just my opinion: I'm more on the old-day, few-photo side than on the modern, indicriminate shooting frenzy.

    Wow, have I digressed. My point is: our societies seems to have been taken over by vanity.
    <img src=/w3timages/blue3line.gif width=33% height=2>
    <img src=/S/flags/Argentina.gif border=0 alt=Argentina width=30 height=18> <big><font color=4682b4><font face="Comic Sans MS">Diegol</font face=comic></font color=4682b4> </big>

  11. #11
    Super Moderator jscher2000's Avatar
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    [quote name='diegol' post='777639' date='30-May-2009 16:50']Wow, have I digressed. My point is: our societies seems to have been taken over by vanity. [/quote]
    Social networks seem to reward popularity-seeking behavior rather than useful behavior, unless by a happy coincidence being useful makes one popular.

  12. #12
    Bronze Lounger IanWilson's Avatar
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    [quote name='jscher2000' post='777865' date='01-Jun-2009 20:18']Social networks seem to reward popularity-seeking behavior rather than useful behavior, unless by a happy coincidence being useful makes one popular. [/quote]
    That's a very profound observation, Jefferson!

    Ian

  13. #13
    Uranium Lounger
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    [quote name='diegol' post='777639' date='30-May-2009 17:50']My point is: our societies seems to have been taken over by vanity. [/quote]
    I'm not quite sure that vanity and self obsession are exactly equivalent, but my observation on FB is that most of the posts are very self obsessed. I joined a while ago to keep touch with distant friends and relations, and have been very disappointed by lack of interaction on what is supposed to a networking site. Only about one in five of my questions to my friends and family gets answered, and an answer is much more common with people over 50. For most young people, including, sadly, my offspring, FB seems like an exercise in solipsism.

    Yes, it can burn up a lot of time. But OTOH, it's not online gambling or porn. In terms of addiction, it's not even FreeCell.

    I'd like to hear more on the security of FB, rather than its utility and value, or lack therof.
    -John ... I float in liquid gardens
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  14. #14
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    [quote name='JohnBF' post='777879' date='01-Jun-2009 18:36']For most young people, including, sadly, my offspring, FB seems like an exercise in solipsism.[/quote]

    Had to look that one up!

    Eng2Spa("solipsism") = "solipsismo" =

    Eng2Eng("solipsism") = "(philosophy) the philosophical*theory that the self is all that you know to exist" (much better!)

    Now I know 2 more words
    <img src=/w3timages/blue3line.gif width=33% height=2>
    <img src=/S/flags/Argentina.gif border=0 alt=Argentina width=30 height=18> <big><font color=4682b4><font face="Comic Sans MS">Diegol</font face=comic></font color=4682b4> </big>

  15. #15
    5 Star Lounger ibe98765's Avatar
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    As has been mentioned, these social networks can consume a lot of time. But a lot of the info on them is not updated. Some is even faked (I have come across services in the past that will build you a profile and link in fake friends, to make you look like someone more important than you may actually be). This can be useful not only for pure ego but also for job seekers. Some companies seem to think that people with social network profiles are better employees! I've seen job ads on LinkedIn where they will only accept people who have a profile there (Jeez)!

    Also, remember that these services really exist for the company to make money from advertising. Here's a story that I think many will find interesting:

    =======================
    BusinessWeek
    The Future of Tech
    May 21, 2009

    Learning, and Profiting, from Online Friendships
    Companies are working fast to figure out how to make money from the wealth of data they're beginning to have about our online friendships

    By Stephen Baker

    A question: If you have 347 followers on the Twitter microblogging service, what are the chances that they'll click on the same online ad you clicked on last night? Advertisers are dying to know. Or, say you and a colleague exchange e-mails on a Saturday night. Can managers assume that you have a tight working relationship? Researchers at IBM and Massachusetts Institute of Technology are investigating.

    Friendships aren't what they used to be. We now have tools, from e-mail to social networks, to keep in touch with people who a decade ago would have drifted into distant memories. Practically every hand we shake and every business card we exchange can lead to an invitation, sometimes within minutes, for a "friendship" on LinkedIn or Facebook. And unless we sever them, these ties could linger for the rest of our lives.

    What do these relationships say about us and the people in our networks? Companies armed with rich new data and powerful computers are beginning to explore these questions. They're finding that digital friendships speak volumes about us as consumers and workers, and decoding the data can lead to profitable insights. Calculating the value of these relationships has become a defining challenge for businesses and individuals.

    Marketers are leading the way. They're finding that if our friends buy something, there's a better-than-average chance we'll buy it, too. It's a simple insight but one that could lead to targeted messaging in an age of growing media clutter.

    The second arena for study is inside companies. Businesses such as Hewlett-Packard and IBM (IBM) are researching employees' relationships with an eye to quickening the flow of knowledge and the generation of ideas within their ranks. One team at IBM Research, studying anonymous data of Big Blue's consultants, concluded that employees who forged tighter e-mail connections with their boss brought in on average $588 more in monthly revenue. This is early-stage research, but the goal is to distill patterns of successful communication and replicate valuable links throughout the company.

    For most of us, the business value of networked friends is tied to a third area, personal opportunity. In addition to companionship, friends online represent a turbocharged Rolodex for entrepreneurs and job seekers inside and outside companies. These collections of contacts expand social horizons, keeping us in touch with more people who can provide ideas, answers, business leads, and even legal advice. Those who master these connections stand to win a big edge: the connections and brainpower of a large team.

    ...

    Full article:
    http://www.businessweek.com/magazine/conte...33032573293.htm

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