Wednesday, May 26, 2010
Geography Lesson... sort of
My church is in the midst of a building program. We’re by no means a large church, but we’ve outgrown some of our facilities and have a plan in place to add more room. The minister said the architect told the building committee that in some mega-churches 50% of the attendees may not actually see the minister face-to-face. They might see him or her projected on a screen in another part of the church complex.
And some folks attend church in their pajamas by watching online. The minister even tempted us with a couple websites if we didn’t believe people attended church
online – www.virtualchurch.com and www.dogchurch.org, which is the Virtual Church of the Blind Chihuahua. Honest. The preacher wouldn’t lie.
Then he made a statement that really surprised me. He said if Facebook was a country, it would be the third largest country in the world after China and India.
I jotted down that factoid on my bulletin and when I got home I used my mad Google skillz to find out more. Here’s what I learned:
~ The Kingdom of Facebook has 400 million users.
~ 50% of active users log in on any given day.
~ 35 million update their status daily.
~ 3 billion photos are uploaded each month.
~ The average user spends more than 55 minutes per day on Facebook.
~ It’s available in more than 70 languages.
~ 70% of users are outside the U.S.
We are becoming an increasingly online society. I can pay my rent online, pay my bills through online banking, order all sorts of household, food and gift items through websites and chat realtime with folks on the other side of the earth.
The art of social networking (most commonly Facebook and Twitter) is being taught in writers workshops around the globe as a tool for writers to connect with their readers.
But I started wondering why non-writers used Facebook. So I did a little informal, unscientific poll and asked a randomly selected group of my Facebook friends the question “Why?” Here are their answers.
I decided to get on Facebook to see pictures of friends' grandkids. Now I keep up with friends & family in at least 10 states! I try not to get on too often 'cause I stay too long.
Yes, it’s a definite time suck. I’m one of those who looks at photos of friends’ grandkids and wonders how we all got old enough to even have grandkids.
I originally joined facebook to keep up with family and college friends. I then branched out to writers and other readers I'd met on blogs. I stay on facebook so I know what is going on with all my friends and family(only way I get updated pictures of cousins, nieces, and nephews). I also keep up with my hometown through facebook and church events through facebook.
Last year I reconnected with a group of my high school classmates. Our 40th reunion was held last fall and while I wasn’t able to attend, it was great to see how the years have treated all of us. I even had one classmate guest blog. You might remember Molly and her blog about her tea shop.
To reacquaint myself with long lost school/classmates, to keep up with family and friends.....and I think you must have a bit of voyeurism in you to read posts....
I had to laugh at this one, especially considering the friend it came from. The voyeurism comment is just like her. But it’s probably true – I know I've peeped through the Facebook windows into people’s lives.
I use Facebook as a tool to reconnect to old friends and people that I use to know in the past. It it wonderful seeing how they have changed, seeing their families and grandchildren. Also knowing what they are doing with their life. I DO NOT use FB for such "games" like Farmtown, sending hearts, hugs, bears..etc...that is silly to me and opens a door for malware on my computer. It does amaze me how some people want to tell everything that is going on in their lives, and that is a huge 'turn-off' to me....I don't want DETAILS on EVERYTHING they do LOL LOL
Hope you are doing good and you are one of the people from my past that I had always wondered about..so glad we reconnected.
I have noticed that when I go out in public..I see FACES of those I see on Facebook!
I wanted to add to my last message that I find that FB can be and IS addicting! Sometimes I find myself checking out FB when my time does NOT permit..I do it anyway. I have to 'test' myself from time to time just to see If I can stay off FB and FB usually wins! LOL
This woman and I were in Sunday School together as small children and she lived in the same neighborhood as my grandparents. We’d lost touch through the years but reconnected on Facebook. Her parents are deceased but she still lives in the home where she grew up. It’s been nice to “visit” my hometown vicariously through her.
It makes my group of friends virtually available anywhere I live and it is easy to stay in touch with lots of people on a regular basis. Also, great way to make new friends!
This one is a friend of a friend who is now a new friend. We met at a Valentine luncheon and by the next day we were Facebook friends. And she’s right – no matter where a friend might move, she’s still available through the computer. Ahem… my friend who moved to Ft. Walton Beach! Get with the program, girlfriend!
I live alone, and Facebook is my way of keeping in touch with my family and friends, to share their lives and have them share mine. I share the minutiae of my day, my triumphs and challenges, joy and disappointments, who I am. I always receive feedback and it makes me feel less isolated, more connected with the world.
This one really resonated with me. When you’re married, you sit at the dinner table and talk about your day. Even the most insignificant things are dinner table talk. But when you live alone, who do you tell about the abandoned birds nest on your patio or that your granddaughter had a dance recital or that you missed half of Dancing with the Stars because you knocked a bottle of nail polish over on the carpet?
Your Facebook friends, that’s who! The details might turn some folks off, and they are free to ignore them. But others are there to offer advice on how to clean the carpet, sympathize over the birds nest and tell you how beautiful your grandchild is.
I started a facebook page for my community service club at Hoover High School, so I could post upcoming activities and message all members (95) at the touch of a button (so easy!). From there, I have grown a community of young women at my church, a family group, and a group of old high school friends. It is fun staying in touch with them. I post status updates about once a week, not every day.
So are YOU on Facebook? Why? What’s been your most interesting Facebook experience? One lucky commenter will get a book from my stash.