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Is Facebook Really Worth Joining?

I'm a self-confessed internet junkie who spends way too many hours staring at my laptop screen (with love, of course).

why-should-i-use-facebook

Not yet on Facebook?

You have not yet made your entry to the world's most popular social networking site Facebook, and you are still indecisive on whether or not to join.

Is it a waste of time?

What can you expect once you get on to the social networking world online?

I still know many people (including friends and family members) who are not yet on Facebook. The usual excuses given are: "I don't have time" or "It's a waste of time" If you have made up your mind about not joining any social networking site, then it is absolutely fine, but if you are still two-minded about it then this page will help you out in making a decision.

A number of reasons are given on why you should or should not use Facebook, whether your kids should use Facebook and what are the common concerns linked with Facebook usage. Go through these points carefully, weigh the pros and cons and make your decision accordingly.

Pic Courtesy: Free Digital Photos

Why You Should Use Facebook

Facebook is mainly used for the following reasons:

  1. To connect with others
  2. For seeing the latest pictures and updates from your friends
  3. Playing games easily like Scrabble with friends
  4. Spreading awareness about your brand or business with the help of a Facebook page
  5. Self-promotion or displaying your talent be it in any field - cooking, dancing, singing, painting, writing, etc.

Mostly, you have to answer these questions

  • Do you want to stay connected with the latest news about your friends or family members?
  • Do you want to promote your brand? It might be a new business or an established business, setting up a Facebook page for your brand is a must nowadays. The traffic social networking sites boast of is incomparable. You might as well use it to your benefit.
  • Do you want to feel good about yourself by promoting your achievements? Get an ego boost?
  • Are you bored out of your wits or looking for some new ways to entertain yourself? Facebook offers a lot of creative, helpful ideas from people around the globe that you can easily access.
  • Do you think you have an amazing sense of humor and/or you have the gift of entertaining or educating others with your words? There are people out there who have become famous on Facebook just by posting original funny Facebook quotes or by writing deep, insightful articles.

If you have answered yes to any of these questions, you might want to be on Facebook and use it according to your preference.

How Not to Use Facebook (or Any Social Networking Platform)

What Facebook should not be ideally used for:

  1. Spying on others on Facebook - Yes, a lot of people do this nowadays but trust me what good would you ever get by spying or stalking people who have no wish to contact you or keep in touch with you? Such a waste of time right? It is human nature to want to spy but don't use it in such a way that it will be harmful to you or for the person in question. I know people who keep spying on their ex's Facebook page and cry a bucketful whenever they see an unpleasant post or status update. Why do this to yourself? Move on.
  2. Bullying others on Facebook - Don't create a Facebook profile with the malicious intent to bully or troll others or to publish demeaning comments about someone from your past. Sure, there might be people who have done you wrong but let Karma do its job. Cyberbullying is a crime and you should never get yourself into such a situation no matter how pissed off you are. Feedback to products or brands however is welcome and you might want to send across your point without being too over-emotional or whiny about it. Show your mature stint while dealing with problems and the company would be more than glad to help out such a customer. This also leads to more customer satisfaction.
  3. Stealing Facebook content or pictures - There are many photographers or writers out there who publish their pictures or notes to the public on Facebook. If you are looking for new content or photos, stealing is not an answer. If in case you want to use any content, always ask for permission first from the author.

Cons of Joining Facebook

So I have given you reasons on why you should use Facebook and how to properly use it i.e. things it should not be used for. Now that we have got that out of the way, here are some cons of using Facebook.

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  • Facebook is downright addictive. If you have friends who are active as well on Facebook, then rest assured you will spend lots of hours on the social networking site commenting, liking posts, publishing status updates, etc. Even if each activity takes only a few minutes, collectively that's a huge amount of time you're spending away on Facebook. This is perhaps one of the most important reasons why you shouldn't be using it.
  • You will be more prone to attacks from gossipmongers. There are a lot of people out there with ghost profiles on Facebook and their major activity is to just scan through status updates, posts, and gossip about it to their friends. Everything you do on Facebook is out there and there's little privacy involved with the whole thing.
  • Once you get addicted, the real-life seems less entertaining and you get bored way too soon. I know dozens of people who would prefer to Facebook away even if there is a social gathering or a party happening around them. Virtual networking tends to take precedence over real-life networking and that's far from good.

A Waste of Time?

There are a large number of people who have told me that Facebook is a waste of time which is why they don't want to set up an account. Is connecting with people a waste of time? Especially to those who are far away from us? True, you can connect to them via Skype or online chat messengers but in such cases it is more like being in a party with only two people. The whole socializing bit in Facebook is what makes it fun. I don't recommend however to spend your entire time on Facebook -- now that would be a waste of time.

Take a moment to vote:

A Distraction at Work?

There are many companies (especially in India) that have banned social networking sites like Facebook, Twitter, Instagram in offices. The reason is obvious - people usually tend to over-browse leading to reduced productivity.

Take a Moment to Vote

Should Kids Use Facebook?

So your kid is pestering you because he/she wants to open a Facebook account but you're not yet sure about it. Should kids use Facebook?

It would be best if, until the teenage years, kids are kept away from online social networking. They should be encouraged to go out and get active rather than sit in front of the computer all day.

The sad plight nowadays is more and more children are becoming couch potatoes and many prefer gaming all day long. This affects their health from early years and the results will start showing as they grow older.

So don't give in to their demands (as much as possible) and educate them on the importance of good health.

Online social networking can wait!

Keeping These Points in Mind..

.. You might come to the conclusion of whether or not you should use Facebook if you haven't joined already.

There's always a bad side and a good side to everything.

Closely analyze and jump into the online scene accordingly.

You don't want to turn into an online networking addict - real life is way too beautiful for that.

Comments

Kalpana Iyer (author) from India on December 10, 2012:

Oh yes! That's annoying but over time I have started tuning them off. I mean I hardly notice them nowadays :)

Joseph Renne from Milton on December 10, 2012:

Interesting Hub. I use Facebook to talk to my friends. I hate all the Ads and How 'likes' turn into ads. I posted a Hub Talking About The Exact Opposite Of this one. How to quit using facebook.

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