I signed up for FB the week they opened it up to non-edu accounts. As a mother, I primarily signed up to keep tabs on my then high school aged son. It did not take long for me to tap into it as a valuable way for me to keep in touch with friends long since left behind.
My parents divorced when I was in high school. My mother moved me from St. Louis, Missouri (population 1+million) to Bandon, Oregon (population 2,800) To call it a culture shock is an understatement. To say that I felt like an alien from outer space is close. But the most shocking aspect of all of this was leaving lifelong friends behind. This is 1986….before (gasp) the internet, email, cell phones….the dark ages of mall bangs and leg warmers…you get the picture.
So, I lost touch with all of my friends from kindergarten through my sophomore year of high school. Sure, there were letters sent here and there and the very occasional visits back to St. Louis over holidays crammed with equal parts family and friends….but it was never the same. And things weren’t much better in Bandon. These people had already established close bonds and circles of trust that I was not a part of. I swear, the first 3 months they were wondering if I was a plant from the narcotics unit (evidently Bandon has a colorful past with lots of herbal growth, if you catch my drift)…So, a few connections were made, but never did I feel as intertwined with the Bandon High culture as I would’ve liked. I had one foot in each world, and felt as if I belonged to neither. I passed up reunion after reunion.
Enter Facebook. suddenly, just by virtue of my profile settings, I found myself getting in touch with people I hadn’t heard or seen from in 20 years or more. I read bios, perved photo albums, caught up with old friends, and met new….all in this living room known as Facebook.
And that is what Facebook is to me. A living room. I try to keep my list to friends and acquaintances I decide to “let in” to my FB page. I am irreverent and funny on FB. but I refrain from being crass or rude. I make it a point not to write anything I wouldn’t want a potential employer to read. If my future potential employer does not have a sense of humor, I am in trouble….but other than that, I’m an open book.
My husband wishes I would share less on FB, and has sometimes specifically asked me NOT to share certain aspects of our lives on FB, and I oblige. And, then there is the fact that , yes, I have one of those moms who is on FB, and I have to watch my P’s and Q’s….That’s where Google+ circles come in handy 😛
So, in a nutshell, FB is the hammer of my toolbox….a go-to tool I use often and couldn’t (yet) replace. Sure, there are newer shinier hammers out there, but FB is where my High School connections are, and I can’t imagine all of them jumping the FB ship for Twitter or Google +. But I refrain from using FB as a business tool, because I don’t like to do business from my living room.
What are your feelings on Facebook? Is it a marketing tool? A living room? or both?