Facebook Data Workshop – James Hyman

For this assignment, I decided to interview my girlfriend about her Facebooking. We both have Facebook and she definitely uses it more than I do, but it is a great way to connect with friends and family who you don’t get to see all of the time. Deciding who to send friend requests too usually is determined by whether or not she knows the person. If she does not know who the person is, she will not send a friend request. When it comes to accepting Facebook requests she is a little more picky and strict in her selections. She does not just accept anyone to be her friend and only wants to be friends with people she really knows and interacts with and not just other random people she has met once or twice. Brittney stated that yes there are people in her life that she refuses to friend on Facebook, some of which she even has blocked. This comes from past situations with people or people that like to creep around and she does not want anything to do with that.

When she decides to ignore or a block a person, some of the criteria she uses is again, whether or not she knows the person will determine if they get accepted or ignored on Facebook and for blocking purposes, anyone who seems out of the ordinary or tries to message her weird things will be blocked immediately. She also stated how she likes the newer feature to Facebook that allows you to leave friendships pending where you do not have to accept or ignore. This is helpful when someone she does not want to be friends with continues to push the ‘add friend’ button and then you can just leave the friendship pending and not have to worry about being bugged anymore. Most of her social networking circle people are people that she really does know in real life. She feels like it is weird to be friends and associate herself online with people that she does not know. Doing so can also lead to some bad situations because you never know about anything that could happen this day and time. Networking has brought a lot of good to our society and technology today, but it can also be very harmful and degrading very fast depending on how you choose to use it and how safe you are about it.

Brittney feels comfortable with most of her friends on her friends list. She stated that she knows all of the friends she is friends with, but would probably get rid of some if it weren’t for the fact of not being rude. She does not accept a lot of peoples requests, not because she wants to hide anything from anyone, she just does not feel like she needs to be friends with thousands of people in an online environment. She said she has gotten rid of most of the people on her Facebook page that have made her feel uncomfortable or that annoy her, either by deleting and blocking them, or by hiding their information so she does not have to look at it.

When looking at profile pictures on her friends list, you can see differences in gender, and age. You do not see a lot of racial, sexuality or subcultural diversity. She has never been exposed to a lot of that and does not know many people from different cultures.

She is also very selective in which groups she joins online too. She is only a part of a few groups on Facebook two of which are online yard sales around the area that we live because it is an easy way to sell things and make a lot of money. She is also a part of two groups, one that she runs and another for the entire nursing school that she attends, another group in memory of her friend who was killed tragically by a drunk driver while running, and another group that is for a friend and cousin Grayson Kirby that was in a horrible accident in 2014 but survived. The reason she is a part of the school groups is to stay updated and post about events going on throughout the nursing school. And the reason she is a part of the pages with people she knows is to support them and their families and look at all of the other amazing stories shared there. The groups she is a part of besides the yard sale groups do nothing but uplift and help each other and others around the world. They have also affected and touched many lives since last year when both of these things occurred.

Her friends list does not really affect her when it comes to deciding what to post as a status. She hardly ever posts status’ but when she does it usually something about what she is doing or where she is going that day and that is pretty much it. She is set to friends only and thinks that it is very important to not have a public profile because then anyone could see any of the information she publishes on Facebook. She does allow people to search to find her on Facebook. How else would you be able to find each other to add as friends? If you can’t search for someone, it’s kind of pointless to have the Facebook page. She does not post on Facebook that often. More than anything what she posts usually is pictures.

Lastly, she feels that her Facebook activity does help her feel connected to others because she can keep up with other friends and family and what they are doing and she loves seeing pictures from others just as they look forward to looking at the pictures and things she posts. Facebook has been helpful to her mainly in staying connected with her family that lives outside of Virginia so it seems like they don’t have to be so distant even though they live so far away at least they are able to communicate easier and still be involved in what is going on in each-others lives.

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