by Marcus Sakey
So I caved. After years of resisting the pressure, I created a Facebook page.
Facebook, like MySpace and texting, is becoming one of those technical divides that marks a change between age groups. For me, it was email--when I was in college, email was just coming into mainstream use, and a remember many a conversation with "old folks" who didn't see the point. "Why not just call? they would ask, reasonably enough. And I'd try to explain as best I could, none of it really coming down to something you could put your finger on, just a statement that it was cool, and useful, and that like it or not, it was the way of the future.
Surprise! I'm one of the old folks now. I'm a little baffled by Facebook. Not how to work it--I'm a pretty technical guy, and have been on computers my whole life, so it's not that I don't understand. I understand. I just don't get it.
Or didn't, at least. After having spent a couple of days playing around, adding friends, installing widgets, and rating movies, it's starting to make a little more sense, at least as a way of keeping in touch with people. I can see how it would be especially useful if, say, your high school gang was going to different colleges. It's an easy, noncommittal way to say hello, to share your pictures, to keep people up on your moods. That part I can see.
Where I'm not sure it's useful is as a marketing tool. Unless I'm missing something--and I may well be, so fill me in--it doesn't seem like it's easy for people I don't know to find me, even if they're searching, unless we have a chain of friendships in common. Plus, once they get there, I'm still a little baffled about what they would do then. Compare their movie taste to mine? I guess that's something, but I'm not sure it's much.
I don't know. Anybody have thoughts on Facebook in general, or on using it as a marketing tool?
And anybody wanna be my friend?