Facebook has consistently got the attention of the world, at times for good reasons and at times for bad. The legal tussles of the founders, the frenzy of the social networking site in Harvard and then beyond, the quick growth that the site recorded and then Mark Zuckerberg becoming the youngest billionaire ever; Facebook has always made the headlines. Even when the privacy issues came to the fore, Facebook did manage to keep growing. You cannot ignore a site or network like Facebook, whether you like the site or not.
There are many advantages of Facebook, from the perspective of being a social networking website and there are some social, cultural and political implications. There are some disadvantages of the website as well, from various perspectives. Here is a brief take on the various Facebook pros and cons.
1. Facebook is a relatively simple site that is easy to use. The signing up process is simple, the site is extremely fast and responsive and every webpage is very well designed. Facebook is not just one of the largest social networks in the world but it is also one of the busiest. There is always something that you can do on the site. Unlike Twitter that confines your word limit and other sites which are yet to become as busy or engaging, Facebook does manage to keep you enticed with all its activity, updates, games and even the media feeds that will keep offering you something to watch, read or do.
2. Facebook packs in everything that one needs, from messenger to video chats, from group chats to events, advertisement and more. There is little or almost nothing that you cannot do on Facebook in comparison with other sites.
3. Facebook has had a far-reaching implication in the real world. It has connected old friends, helped people make new friends and have also helped build virtual groups, communities and a large market for companies. But beyond these micro-achievements, Facebook has a macro-accomplishment. It has broken traditional barriers. There is no geography or secluded history in the virtual world of Facebook. The site has brought more than a billion people on the same platform and has made no distinction based on nationality, race, religion, caste or anything as such. There’s no one rich or poor on Facebook, there’s no white or black, no privileged and unprivileged. Everyone is entitled to an account and everyone can have fun. More importantly, Facebook has given everyone a voice. Of course there are many sites today that offer the same but Facebook was the first to do it better than anyone else.
4. Facebook has made the world a much more open place. One gets to know people from distant corners of the world and can connect, share content and also share opinions or views. As a result, kids have a much broader view of the world and also understanding of what’s going on in which part of the cosmos. Researchers can conduct surveys, companies can harness the power of the site to reach their target audience and there are countless significant ways that the site can be used and is being used right now.
5. Facebook is indeed a friend when one is lonely. Checking out old photos, videos, chatting with friends or simply browsing through several friends’ profiles or knowing what they are up to can be a great stress buster. In a world where people are increasingly mobile and often end up in a city or country far away from their homeland and loved ones, Facebook is the much needed balm.
1. Facebook has privacy issues. It had them five years back and it would have them five years later. It is said that once you upload something onto the internet, it will always be there, even if you delete it. With Facebook, there are ample reasons to believe that the site intentionally stores information, even if that is being deleted by a user.
2. Facebook has been at the receiving end many times for being a thriving ground for stalkers, bullies and the alleged big brother activities of a state. There is not only a lack of privacy on Facebook but there is every possibility that your account and your details would be used against you in some way.
3. If security wasn’t a big enough concern with Facebook, it is also bad for your health. Kids and even adults spend way too much time on Facebook instead of playing outdoors or indulging in activity that would be otherwise healthy. There is little to prove that the site helps in bettering social skills or cognitive capability of a child. Instead, there is sufficient proof to indicate that sites like Facebook are contributing to the obesity epidemic in developed countries.
4. Facebook can be misused in many ways. There are cases of young girls having met strangers on the site and then being assaulted on an apparent date. Data found on Facebook and the facts they revealed have been cited in legal cases. Unpleasant information uploaded about people have cost jobs and have dented their image in the public eye and within their real social circle. There are many evils of Facebook that are oft not focused on.