Facebook For Dummies
Facebook is one of the dominant social networking sites in the world. Facebook lets you share photos, videos, links, status updates, and much more with your friends. As you discover how this social networking site works, use this handy reference to help you find people on Facebook, communicate with friends, and figure out what to do as soon as you log in.
Top 5 Things to Check When You Log Into Facebook
Facebook is all about staying in touch with friends. Right after you log into Facebook, check out which of your friends has a birthday coming up, the requests you've received, and what your friends are up to.
|Check Your . . .||What It Is||How to Do It|
|News Feed||A continuous stream of updates about your friends’ activities on and off Facebook.||Look at the Home page — News Feed flows down the wide center column with stories and posts from your friends.|
|Upcoming Birthdays and Events||A list of upcoming events and friends’ birthdays occurring today.||Check the top of the right side of the Home page. For birthdays, only the names of those friends who have listed their birthdays show up.|
|Inbox||Messages from friends or other people on Facebook.||Click the Messages icon in the big blue bar on top of any Facebook page to see recent messages between you and friends.|
|Friend Requests||Friends asking to connect with you.||Click the Friend Requests icon in the blue bar on top of any Facebook page to open the Friend Requests window. Click confirm or delete request to respond to pending requests.|
|Notifications||A list of actions that have been taken on your timeline or your posts: things like comments, replies to comments, photo tags, likes, and so on.||Click the Notifications icon in the big blue bar on top of any Facebook page to open your Notifications. The list that opens shows all your recent notifications, click on any one to go to the content or part of Facebook it is talking about.|
How to Find People You Know on Facebook
A popular way to use Facebook is to find people from your past or get to know friends of friends. To find people you know on Facebook and to build your Friend List, check out this table, which outlines a few easy ways to do just that.
|What to Do||How to Do It|
|See which people in your email address book or instant messenger (IM) buddy list are on Facebook.||Click the Friend Requests icon in the big blue bar on top. Click Find Friends in the upper right corner of the menu that opens. Facebook allows you to import from a variety of popular email and IM services from the Add Personal Contacts section.|
|Search your classmates and coworkers.||Click the Friend Requests icon in the big blue bar on top. Click Find Friends in the upper right corner of the menu that opens. Enter school or work info into the correct fields in the Search for Friends section of the page.|
|Look at your friends' friends.||There's a good chance you know the friends of your friends. To view their friends, go to their Timelines and click the Friends section.|
|Check out people you may know.||Based on which friends you already have, Facebook has ideas about people you may know. Check out the People You May Know box in News Feed and on the right side of your Home page to see you Facebook suggests.|
|Keep an eye on your News Feed.||You may get News Feed stories about friends and some of their friends. You probably know many of the same people as your friends, so keep your eyes peeled for these stories. When you see someone you know, you can add them as a friend.|
Celebrate Your Friends' Birthdays on Facebook
Celebrating birthdays on Facebook is a great way to show your friends you care about them. Facebook birthday celebrations are fun, inexpensive, and easy to do. Here's how:
|What to Do||What It Is||How to Do It|
|Write on a friend's Timeline.||Formerly called the "Wall," this public forum usually fills up with well-wishes on a person's birthday.||Go to a friend's Timeline, find the Publisher below their cover photo in the middle of the screen, and enter your message.|
|Send a friend a message with a sticker.||A sticker is the Facebook equivalent of a real world sticky piece of flair. There are stickers for all sorts of images, including birthday-related ones.||Open a message window and enter your friend's name. At the bottom of the window, click the smiley face icon to open the Browse Stickers window. Select the sticker you want and it will be sent to your friend in a message.|
|Tag a friend in a status update.||Status updates are your own posts to your friends on Facebook. You can add tags to posts to give a shout-out to the people you mention.||Go to your Timeline and start typing a status into the Publisher. Enter the @ symbol, and begin typing your friend's name. You can then Select your friend's name from the list that appears, and when you post, they'll be notified.|
|Make a Thanks video.||A slideshow video that lets your friend know how much you appreciate them.||Navigate to www.facebook.com/thanks. Select your friend's name and then choose from photos of the two of you to create your video.|
|Call a friend.||This is a good old-fashioned verbal birthday wish.||Go to their Timeline, click the Info tab, and look for their phone number located under Contact Info. Use your phone to call them — and maybe sing!|
How to Communicate with Your Friends on Facebook
Meet up with friends on Facebook. You can communicate with your friends on Facebook in a whole host of ways: posting, writing on their timelines, sending messages, and more.
|What to Do||What It Is||How to Get There|
|Send a message.||Similar to an email, but short, sweet, and no need to remember any email addresses.||Go to your friend's Timeline. Click the Message button in the bottom right corner of their cover photo.|
|Create a post.||If you have something you think might interest friends, but you're not sure who or how much, you can create a post. Your friends may read it in their News Feed or see it when they visit your Timeline.||Click in the publisher at the top of News Feed or on your own Timeline. Write whatever you think might interest some of your friends. Wait for the comments and messages to trickle back.|
|Write on a friend's Timeline.||To communicate with friends in public, to tease them, or to congratulate them for something their friends might want to hear about, write on their Timelines.||Go to the Timeline of any friend and write in the Publisher below their cover photo. Posts go into mutual friends' News Feeds.|
|Share a photo on the go.||You can use Facebook's app for smartphones to share the photos you take with your Facebook friends.||From the Facebook app for iPhone or Android, tap on the Photo button. This opens your phone's camera roll, where you can select photos you want to share with friends. Tap post once you've chosen a photo.|
|Tag friends in a status update.||If you're posting something that you know might interest certain people, you can tag them so they'll be notified about the post.||Click in the Publisher on your Timeline or Home page and type your post. Type @ and start typing your friend's name, and select their name from the menu of names that Facebook generates as you type.|
Common Facebook Terminology
If you're new to Facebook, you'll run into some unfamiliar terminology. Here are some common Facebook terms and their definitions; get to know them so you can get the most out of Facebook:
Your Timeline is your profile page. It contains all your posts, your photos and videos, a list of your friends, your favorite activities and interests, and any biographical info you've chosen to share. This is where your friends can leave you messages, and you can update the world with anything you feel like sharing.
The News Feed is a continuous stream of updates about your friends' activities on and off Facebook. It appears on your Home page.
A Friend is someone you are connected to on Facebook. Friending is the act of sending someone a friend request; all friendships have to be confirmed by both people in order for it to be official on Facebook.
A status update is a short post you share on Facebook talking about what you're doing, thinking, or feeling at the moment. People update their status about everything from what they're eating to sharing memories about a loved one to advocating for a particular political position.
The Publisher is the box that lives at the top of your News Feed and Timeline, where you can go to create posts, status updates, share photos, and so on.