Friday, 23 July 2010

To be or not to be ... on Facebook

The answer to this dilemma is obvious - BE THERE. At this point I am, because it is one of The 23. I did not join the site straight away though, being a little afraid of becoming too involved. Hearing stories about Facebook and observing my daughter, rather active there (and who would feed the cat, hoover the carpet or tidy up her room?), with all these mixed feelings about it, I have finally given in. What convinced me eventually was a story I heard on the radio about a child who could not wish a happy birthday to his grandpa because grandpa was not on Facebook! I would not like to disappoint my future grandchildren! And the result of my joining in has been even worse than I expected. On the first day I spent one or one and half hours on it, on the second day - most of the evening. Today I have been on and off for the most of the day. And night. I had even been chatting and exchanging messages with my boss! During working hours! Addictive. Like Flickr and the LibraryThing, and Delicious and... and...and... No end.
My facebook account is more personal than I at first planned when opening it. Seconds after signing in I was offered to become a friend of my friends, and of their friends and of some well known people whom I might have heard about. So I have enthusiastically joined the game, and collected lots of pictures in my friends gallery including those of Jeremy Clarkson, The Beatles (who is running their site?) and even of some interesting, controversial politicians. I had slight trouble though with finding the 23 Things Cambridge on Facebook. However with a little help from family and friends this problem was sorted (I just did not read the instructions, missing a bit about joining the Cambridge network first). So at the moment I am enjoying seeing friends and their pictures, reading their posts and chatting a bit too. I even managed to send Birthday wishes to my niece (my
friend now) on time, otherwise the greeting card sent in the usual way would be, as always, too late. My daughters are my friends now too! I hope it will stay this way. Another benefit of "belonging" to this newly evolved species of Homo facebookiens (not L.) was getting the invitation to the 23 Things closing ceremony. Thank you! I will be there (if I don't get stuck at Warsaw airport in case, touch wood, another volcano decides to erupt, like what happened to me in April).

Facebook and libraries. This is a question. Since such an enormous number of people are Facebook linked it seems to be obvious that it is an important way of communicating with present and possibly with future library users. Promoting our work and our collections, advertising new purchases, announcing events, answering queries or even chatting to people who might have an urgent need to ask a librarian (or a library assistant) seems very reasonable. All this, carried on from a strictly professional, special account, might be a full time job in a bigger library. At the moment in my workplace our users are being informed , at least we think they are, by email and via the intranet where library pages may be found. It is possible however
that more information would be getting to people if they could read it on their Facebook wall. Moreover it would get to them faster. Providing of course that everyone has an account. Many do, but have they all? Intranet access is open to all staff members and students, "allpeople" email is sent to all people. Facebook information would be available to Face-bookworms (no offence) only. As it is compulsory to have an email address, I suppose that having a Facebook account might be made compulsory too. Before this happens however, I intend to explore Facebook more thoroughly. Hopefully I will find more friends or maybe some long lost friend will find me? I have not covered my real face on the Facebook but here on Blogger I am staying the Revelation23, at least till the end of all things.


  1. Let's hope that the end of all things does not happen when we're here to see it! And to think that you've been sucked into Facebook... What does your daughter think of this?

  2. The last Word in my Facebook blog shoud be spelled with capital T (Things not things), as in 23 Things Cambridge. I also do not want to see the absolute end of all things!

  3. Oh, I see. I thought it was a clever pun on 'Revelation'.