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2/5/2014
10:46 AM
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Facebook: What We Love To Loathe

Facebook tests your patience on privacy -- and some friends test your patience with TMI. Survey shows what makes Facebook fans tick, and what ticks them off.

10 Famous Facebook Flops
10 Famous Facebook Flops
(Click image for larger view and slideshow.)

At 10 years old, Facebook has grown up. It's adapted as browsing habits and social networking trends have changed, proving to naysayers that the company has staying power. Today, it's the social network of choice, used by 57% of all adults and 73% of teens, 64% of whom visit the site daily, according to the Pew Research Center.

But that doesn't mean everyone loves it. To commemorate Facebook's 10th birthday, the Pew Research Center released new survey findings, including details about users' habits today and what they like and dislike about the world's dominant social networking platform.

No. 1 on users' list of gripes should come as no surprise: oversharing. According to the report, 36% of users said they "strongly dislike" people sharing too much information about themselves, including excessive status updates and photo uploads.

[Facebook has suffered some strikeouts during its 10 years. Read more: 10 Famous Facebook Flops.]

Photo concerns resonated particularly with parents, the report said. "Parents are especially protective of images of their children, as 57% of Facebook users with children under the age of 18 say that people posting pictures of their children without asking permission first is something they strongly dislike about using Facebook."

Other dislikes highlight users' complicated relationship with Facebook's privacy settings. Of the 1,801 adults surveyed, 27% report worrying that friends may see posts or comments that weren't intended for them, and 24% said they feel pressure to share too much about themselves.

But despite omnipresent complaints and recent reports about its user base, Facebook users are not abandoning the site in droves. In fact, what keeps users returning are viewing friends' photos and videos (47%), sharing content with many people at once (46%), and browsing entertaining or funny posts (39%), the survey said.

"Other aspects of Facebook -- such as keeping up with news or receiving support from the people in one's network -- appeal to a more modest audience of users," the report said. "Men and women sometimes vary in their reasons for using the site."

While users visit Facebook to consume different types of content -- updates, photos, and news -- few share content themselves, the survey found. Only 10% of users change or update their own Facebook status on a daily basis, with 4% updating their status several times per day. One quarter of Facebook users reported they never change or update their own Facebook status.

Instead, the most popular actions include "liking" content, which 44% of users say they do at least once a day, and commenting on their friends' photos, which 31% of users report doing daily.

Too many companies treat digital and mobile strategies as pet projects. Here are four ideas to shake up your company. Also in the Disruption issue of InformationWeek: Six enduring truths about selecting enterprise software (free registration required).

Kristin Burnham currently serves as InformationWeek.com's Senior Editor, covering social media, social business, IT leadership and IT careers. Prior to joining InformationWeek in July 2013, she served in a number of roles at CIO magazine and CIO.com, most recently as senior ... View Full Bio

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Kristin Burnham
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Kristin Burnham,
User Rank: Author
2/5/2014 | 11:42:07 AM
Agree?
Readers, do you agree with the report's top dislikes?
moarsauce123
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moarsauce123,
User Rank: Ninja
2/5/2014 | 4:35:57 PM
Re: Agree?
Isn't TMI the sole reason why service like Facebook exist? It is like wanting to live out in the woods without neighbours but still be close to highways, airports, restaurants, and shopping.
Ariella
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Ariella,
User Rank: Ninja
2/5/2014 | 5:30:07 PM
Re: Agree?
@moarsauce123 I think that some people really do believe FB is just a means of sharing everything. I really don't want TMI about a person's private life. It amazes me that people filter so little. Do I really need to know that your son had an ingrown toenail removed this morning? I think not. And as the child can easily be identified by the mother, isn't it a disservice to him to post so much about him on a public forum?
Kristin Burnham
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Kristin Burnham,
User Rank: Author
2/6/2014 | 12:24:48 PM
Re: Agree?
I think it depends. Some look at Facebook as a digital scrapbook. Think about the 10-year "look back" videos that everyone is sharing: Was it necessary to post every single picture or status update that you did? Probably not. But as the video proves, looking back at it is fun.
Ariella
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Ariella,
User Rank: Ninja
2/6/2014 | 12:31:37 PM
Re: Agree?
@Kristen I never post personal pictures on FB, so it didn't offer me a movie. As those videos are really based on images, Pinterest can capitalize on that kind of record-keeping and encourage peopel to use it to form a kind of documentary over time. Mostly people share thing that they'd like to have or make or see, but I suppose they can encourage a section for actual experiences to later be made into such videos. 
Kristin Burnham
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Kristin Burnham,
User Rank: Author
2/6/2014 | 5:28:42 PM
Re: Agree?
Would you be more willing to post personal photos on Pinterest?
Ariella
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Ariella,
User Rank: Ninja
2/6/2014 | 5:32:39 PM
Re: Agree?
@Kristen I wouldn't because I don't care to post my whole life on social media. But for those who do, I think Pinterest can try to lure them over with its own life movies. I see my FB connections all touting their movies, so it's a great bit of PR for them that other outlets can try to emulate.
David F. Carr
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David F. Carr,
User Rank: Author
2/7/2014 | 11:00:49 AM
Bottom line
We like Facebook because it gives us another thing to complain about.
AriB599
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AriB599,
User Rank: Apprentice
2/21/2014 | 10:22:51 PM
Personal interest
What bothers me more is when friends post stuff NOT about themselves... presumed amusing tidbits gleaned from the public Internet. Sometimes dozens a day that I have to sift through to get to anything interesting. I'm on Facebook to make contact with them, not to be amused or pick up public information.
Kristin Burnham
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Kristin Burnham,
User Rank: Author
2/24/2014 | 9:09:23 AM
Re: Personal interest
That's how a lot of people use Facebook -- almost as a sounding board. I have some friends in my stream who abuse this; for them, I remove their posts from my news feed (without unfriending them entirely).
Social is a Business Imperative
Social is a Business Imperative
The use of social media for a host of business purposes is rising. Indeed, social is quickly moving from cutting edge to business basic. Organizations that have so far ignored social - either because they thought it was a passing fad or just didnít have the resources to properly evaluate potential use cases and products - must start giving it serious consideration.
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