Monday, November 17, 2008

Java and Chat on Facebook

After my blog, “Twitter and Tea” I feel there is a trilogy to be written here, so here’s part two.


After we get going with our work after breakfast, unless we are shift workers, there’s that time after hard work we want to wind down. Some folks go to the pub or bar, but that’s a dwindling habit. A growing habit is to meet in a coffee bar or simply find a quite space in a coffee bar to read something.


I do find Facebook is a wonderful virtual alternative for this, as I am not a regular bar person and a decent coffee house or bar is not near by. On top of that my work attracts contacts from all over the world so Facebook is perfect.


There are some folks I have invited to Facebook who have not done much there as they have not discovered it. Its like buying a new digital camera with all of those buttons. However, if you take a break every day or two and focus on what just one button does on the camera, within a couple of weeks you’ll become a digital camera expert. Unfortunately, most people are overwhelmed by all of the buttons and just stick to the simple auto shoot and click and go no further. 


With Facebook the one thing that seems to be automatic are the invites to join applications to be more green, more sexy, more giving, more artistic etc.. I find these are a nuisance and too often lure folks into spammed situations. Very simple, though. Just go to notifications and click all of the ignore buttons.


Set that side of Facebook aside and we are left with an incredible range of applications and services that are so simple and safe to use, once you try them out. Like the digital camera, do not try all of it at once.


Finding some friends on Facebook is the first thing. If you run known email addresses of friends through Facebook search you’ll be surprised who’s there and so you invite them to be friends on Facebook with you. That’s one evening’s use of Facebook.


Next day, go to a friend’s profile and send them a private message. Link is under the profile photo. Try that with a few friends, and by the next day one or two will write back. When messages are sent on Facebook they also show up in the receiver’s email box. Because Facebook messaging is so easy and secure I am finding myself sending more Facebook messages than emails these days.


Here is my daily Facebook routine   


Everyone develops their own, but maybe you would like to try this to get beyond private messaging.


First, this is a coffee break, a Java break, and I treat it similar.


I start by glancing down my Facebook home page and see what interaction friends are doing. Some things will seem worth clicking on for further info. All kinds of things are posted here such as “what am I doing” micro blogs, larger blogs, photos, video clips, new songs or audio clips and new friendships which may trigger off reminders that these people are friends of your’s too. I have discovered several long lost friends and even relations this way.


Next, I click the Friends link to read the latest micro blog “what are you doing at the moment” statements that are listed in order of posting, with the most recent at the top, and only the most recent posting by each friend.


If any of these postings attract interest, click on the link to the friend’s page and you may well find there is a thread supporting this interesting microblog such as photos, video clip, blog or chat with other friends. This introduces the more open messaging service, the wall posting where you can leave your comment, or you could click the post a link, link if you know a web page that may interest or help your friend. You can respond with photos too, but stick to trying one thing at a time such as wall posts one week, moving onto sharing links the following week and then try photo sharing and response.


Now this sound likes taking up a lot of time, but I do find myself following this routine and being done in under 10 minutes and sometimes a bit of extra chat and swapping can extend to 20 minutes or longer, but that’s not average. Overall, its yer average Java break time, the time it takes for your ultra hot coffee to cool down a bit, or whatever beverage you choose.


Finally, I click on my own profile link, the link with your name to see if I missed anything from anyone, and about once a week to make sure my personal info is current.


Now there is something else I do on Facebook, but not at Java time, and I’ll leave this to the third blog in this Trinity as this is something I do for fun during some evenings, and its much better than watching tele.


So how can this be good for business?


Facebook is not a place to do business, but it can attract business.


My own priority is to encourage people I know from friendships, social situations and through my work and business to join me or social with me on Facebook is they are already there. I like to keep Facebook for fun and exchanging. However, through chat there are times when someone shares a problem, challenge or question and you know you can help, often because that’s what you do in your job or business. In these situations its certainly not spamming to introduce what you do and how you can help. However, it does not work if you scour Facebook just to find people you think you can help with your business services. People quickly sniff this out as being spammy.


There are two great things on Facebook to help your business.


The most important thing is the Information block in the left margin where you can post clickable links to your web site and blog. If folks like you, what you say, what you post and how you seem to help, they will go to your links to learn more about what you do and then privately talk to you about it as a potential customer or client.


Second is the Facebook Pages service which is like a fan page. I must admit that I have not developed a way to make the best advantage of this as it cannot be listed on your wall page unless you post a re-direct URL in the links list in the Information block. This needs some HTML knowledge to do that so its not for everyone, plus some annual investment on another domain name. The only other access to your Facebook Page is through Google search or clicking your Info Tab and scrolling right down. Few of your profile visitors will do that.


Meanwhile I do find the links in my Information block are very responsive so I am not too worried about Facebook Pages yet.


So I hope this second blog of this trilogy will set you up to enjoy future Java moments on Facebook


…. and build a wonderful social circle.


This is a wonderful thing, especially for seniors. Facebook is really simple to use and seniors will be amazed how they will re-connect with friends and family from their past they they thought were lost for ever. If anyone is lonely, using Facebook is a remarkable medicine for this as it truly shows we are not alone. People are interested in what we have to share and it is surprising how our humble knowledge and abilities can give some light to someone else, just as they do for us.


Put aside the media driven fear of the internet as a place of perverts and cruel people because those we discover, connect and network with on Facebook demonstrate the gift that the internet can be, but this is not the stuff that makes the news. Its hard to sell good news but its easy to share it.


 


    

5 comments:

  1. John
    Thank you for being so generously open with your writing... As always you make me go away and try something else... I'm afraid i'm still one of the one click shooters!!! :-)
    Best wishes
    Fil

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  2. Some of the best photos ever taken have been from auto and single click photography, even from disposable cameras. There are times I've fiddled with speeds and exposure and taken an auto shot for reference, only to find the auto shot is the best.

    ..... but when we learn the other "buttons" we discover more, open up more possibilities, boost our pride, and think "now why did I not do this before" and even "how did I get by without knowing this".

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  3. Hello John - WOW do I need this like my next breath!

    How did you know?

    I am a Holistic Health Journalist who specialises in 12 Step Principles - Whenever I see one I pounce! and speedily reduce the usual verbal diarrhea to something simple, and send it out into the world!

    Mostly I have FUN talking to people (only women these days - I have been told I 'mess with mens' heads!) and sharing Life and Love.

    I have just come through the 'Valley of the Shadow' for the UMPTEENTH time and am a bit 'shell-shocked' so you will pardon me if I hit and run for now.

    Now that I have signed-in you can expect the unexpected soon!

    GBU Always Anna N.

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  4. Hello again John - It's me, the Butterfly back from a different realm (you know, the 'otherworld') I'm a bit of a 'shapeshifter' these days and I have come to the sad conclusion that I cannot join you on 'Facebook' until I go 'Broadband' - I am on dial-up and it is sooooooo slooooowww loading.

    Never mind - I can always log-on to your site and catch up for now.

    Must butterfly off - Cheers. AnnaLyn b.

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  5. Compared to all social sites, Facebook was once the best to access and use on dial up connections. However, I am sure its new popularity is currently clogging slow systems.

    If you are in what seems to be a dial up only area check to see what your local cell/mobile phone company offers. Their 3G modems may step down to just G in remote areas but even that G service is 4 to 6 times faster than most dial up services, and at low cast monthly flat rates too.

    While touring the USA last March I found my Vodafone mobile modem worked very well on the AT&T 3G network in remote parts of the USA where nobody had broadband. My overseas roaming costs were also very low.

    ReplyDelete