Tuesday, May 14, 2019

Why Facebook?

There are a lot of bad things said about Facebook -- cyber bullying, terrible political battles, hacking by Russians and others, etc., etc., etc.

But when you use Facebook as I have since 2007 it's more fun than not.  I have made lots of "imaginary friends" (as my CompuServe friend's wife used to call us) here, most of whom I'll never meet but who have been following me--and I them--for more than 20 years.  I can't think of any negative situation I've had with Facebook, at least not that I'm aware of.

I've received unsolicited gifts, which surprised and delighted me.  I've had more sympathy than anybody has a right to and have joined in countless digital memorial services (even a wedding or two).  My mother's family has its own group where I can keep up with what is going on with everyone.  I've learned so much from the Dementia group here.  I get so much information and recipes from the Instant Pot group. And since nobody that I talk with on a regular basis is a fan, it's great to have somewhere to share feelings about Outlander.

Yesterday was one of those days where I hoped Facebook would come through for me--and it did--in less than 10 minutes.  It was one of those times which I have too often when I hit something on the keyboard without realizing it as I was leaving the room and when I came back I couldn't figure out why everything was outlined in blue.  Everything.  Not just Facebook, but WordPerfect and even Photoshop.  I couldn't get rid of the blue outlines.

I have had speakers attached to my computer forever but they have not worked in decades, so it was not until I put speakers in my ears to listen to an audio message that I realized that the blue outline indicated the things that were being narrated.  I opened up G-mail and suddenly the whole pages was being read to me!

I spent a long time trying to look through everything to find out how to turn OFF narration, but to no avail.

I finally put a note on Facebook, wondering how long it would take to get an answer.  The first answer came within 3 minutes, but from someone who is a Mac user (they are invariably the first, usually to let me know how inferior my PC is), who said he didn't know but this was what he did on his Mac.  Literally 2 minutes later, a PC user was there with the answer and within 10 minutes, my narration was turned off.

I cannot list the times when Facebook followers have come through for me, helping me solve a nagging minor computer problem -- or commiserate with me while my guru has the computer and is trying to fix it.

Facebook is also good for stupid quizzes, which yes, I know are designed to get information from you to be used nefariously, but I still enjoy them, like this one today, the Enneagram, designed to get my personality type.

Turns out I'm The Peacemaker. Your Enneagram personality type is the Peacekeeper. You're a daydreamer at heart with incredible artistic potential. You're driven by love, a love for others, a love for life, and a love for all challenges that life brings you. You fear loss and separation and you thrive in cooperative and peaceful environments. You tend to avoid conflicts and you'd rather not shake things up. This can often make you somewhat detached from the conflicts around you. Use your natural peacemaking skills to help others resolve their issues. You're a true diplomat that unites total opposites. World peace may very well be on your shoulders. Are you up for the task?  That seems pretty spot on, though I'm too old to wrestle Jared for solving the middle east problem at the moment.

So Facebook is a good friend.  It's there when I need conversation, and can be shut down without being rude.  It has not (yet) brought me ill and I was such an open book on the Internet long before Facebook was invented that I don't worry about my privacy being breached because you have long been able to find out most of what you wanted to know about me anyway, long before I even though that privacy was something to be guarded.

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