Facebook's 10-year anniversary: 8 best and worst things
Daniel Bitonti, CTVNews.ca Staff
Published Tuesday, February 4, 2014 9:53AM EST
Last Updated Tuesday, February 4, 2014 9:54AM EST
It’s time to celebrate a huge milestone.
Believe it or not, it’s already been a decade since we first started sharing pictures, videos and of course those attention-seeking status updates that seemingly bear no importance to anyone but yourself. It’s been a full decade since we first realized that we really have hundreds of “friends.”
Yes, Facebook is turning 10.
And statistics show that in just 10 years, Facebook has accumulated 1.23-billion monthly users, or about one-sixth of the world’s population.
To celebrate the milestone, we’ve compiled a list of some of the best and worst things about the world’s most used social network.
Best: Sharing music
There’s nothing like going on to your news feed and discovering a new song. For a lot of people, that’s the best part of Facebook. And according to Unruly Media, a global technology platform that keeps statistics on the most viral videos on the Internet, Jennifer Lopez’s song “On The Floor,” featuring rapper Pitbull, has 38 million Facebook shares, making it the all-time most shared video on Facebook. In fact, the top 100 most shared videos ever on Facebook are all music videos. In case you’re wondering, Gangnam Style came in at third, shared more than 36 million times.
Worst: Too much information
While videos are great, more than 36 per cent of Facebook users dislike when people share too much information about themselves, according to a new study by the Pew Research Centre. We all know those posts: They’re often nothing more than people sharing trivial details about the current activity they’re doing. But often it can easily border on the dreaded “humble brag.” An example: “Ugh, the wait at the airport here is so bad. Terrible start to my 10-day trip to Europe.” Here’s another one. “I’m kind of bad at this stuff. Does anyone know what to wear for a med school interview?
Best: Sharing important pictures
Facebook has become a hub for people to share some of the most important pictures coming out of every corner of the globe. That can be anything from the devastating impact of a tsunami, to the wife of a soldier lying beside her husband’s coffin the night before his funeral, refusing to leave his side. One of the most shared pictures of all time on Facebook was a picture of U.S. President Barack Obama embracing First Lady Michelle Obama shortly after winning the White House in 2012, with the caption “Four more years.” More than 500,000 people shared the picture, which also got more than 4 million likes.
Worst: Baby pictures
There’s perhaps nothing worse than the dreaded baby picture. According to the Pew study, 57 per cent of Facebook users with children under 18 strongly dislike other people posting pictures of their children. While that’s a bit reassuring, that leaves a large percentage of people who still think there’s nothing wrong with posting baby pics of their kid’s first steps or little Johnny or Suzy doing something funny during snack time. It can sometimes make the parent look a bit foolish for showing off their family -- many people have children -- but also raises ethical questions about posting pictures to a public forum without the consent of the child. The Internet is forever, and it’s hard to get rid of pictures once they’re online.
Best: Sharing GIFs
Gifs have become a dominant force on Facebook. A GIF (Graphics Interchange Format) is a compressed file format that allows people to take static images, or video, and splice them together in an endless loop. In other words, they’re extremely short videos -- one to three seconds -- often displaying an incredibly funny action. Click here to see some of the best.
Worst: Being unfriended
Being unfriended on Facebook -- meaning someone you were “friends” with has chosen they no longer like you -- can often be one of the most perplexing things to happen on Facebook. If you have a bad breakup with someone, certainly getting them out of your life also means getting them out of your Facebook feed. But what often leaves people confused is when someone unfriends them on Facebook when you weren’t really friends with them in real life in the first place. And according to the Pew study, more than 12 per cent of Facebook users have actually been asked by someone else to unfriend someone in their own network.
Best: Never-ending party life
One of the biggest advantages of Facebook is that since you’re “friends” with so many people, you end up getting invited to seemingly countless events. Facebook is often an endless stream of invitations to shows, parties and a variety of other happenings. And according to the Pew study, only five per cent of Facebook users dislike the fact that the site allows them to see others partaking in social activities. So in other words, your amazing social life is offending few people.
Worst: A huge waste of time
We’re now so engrossed with Facebook that it feels like we couldn’t live without it. But the reality is that Facebook, in large part, is often an utter waste of time. Have you ever caught yourself scrolling down your news feed in a complete daze, not even thinking what you’re actually doing, simply on the site now because of sheer habit. Some estimates say that the average time someone spends on Facebook per day is about to 20 minutes, which translates to roughly five full days per year. The question you have to ask yourself now is whether it’s still worth it.