Facebook: An Open Space for Engagement

on Aug 10, 2008

I just logged into my Facebook account and the first thing I saw was one of my college senior photographs of his vacation trip to Gomba Romoa.

Facebook Profile 

Facebook Profile

I really liked the photographs and I went on to see all the photographs in the album. The point is I haven’t met this guy in last 10 years and even during my college days, we had never really palled around. And here I am spending 10 mins of my daytime watching his vacation trip photographs. Be the way, my interaction did not end there. I clicked “like” on some the photographs I liked and while watching the photographs, I saw a comment from one of our common friend I vaguely remember. I decided to have a look at his profile and I invited him to be my friend. What I did not realize was whatever I was doing I was unconsciously transferring the information further to all my friends’ community. Now all my friends got to know that I liked something on his profile and also the fact that I am now a friend of another guy named “X”.

What really makes Facebook such a convenient place for engagement?

    1. Ease of Use: Facebook has done a remarkable job in designing the user interface. In literally no steps I can accomplish my objective. For example:


      1. I can communicate that I like something shared by my friend in a single click.
      2. I can play the video my friend has shared on the same page and in a single click.
      3. I can add friends in a single click.
      4. I can submit my comments in a single click.
      5. I am automatically subscribed to the comment stream. I never had to click on “subscribe to comments” anywhere.
      6. I can create a new Facebook ad or page or group in less than a minute.

I am sure with the recent acquisition of FriendsFeed, Facebook interface will very soon become even more user friendly.

  1. Every action adds to ripple effects: When Facebook started the News Feed feature; there was major uproar across all communities that it violates the privacy of the users. Well it does. No matter what you do on Facebook, your friends will get to know about it, which you may not like. At the same time in return you also get to know what your friends are doing and that is something most of us are interested in. Any information shared over the Facebook comes as news about one of your friend, which will definitely keep us engaged. Moreover, any action taken on that peace of information furthers the ripple effects.
  2. Its Addictive: This addictive quality keeps Facebook's typical user on the site for an average of 169 minutes a month, according to ComScore. Compare that with Google News, where the average reader spends 13 minutes a month checking up on the world, or the New York Times website, which holds on to readers for a mere ten minutes a month.

In case you have further thoughts about Facebook as a platform, feel free to communicate here.

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