Columns / Discourse / October 6, 2010

Did You Know: Facebook facts

Facebook! Who doesn’t love it? People all over the world use this social networking site to keep in contact with friends, to update each other on their lives and to talk to people without actually having to meet them. I, for one, have definitely gotten into this popular site, and, I’m guessing, most of Knox is with me. But I bet you didn’t know these next ten facts about the all-popular Facebook.

1. There are over 350 million active users on Facebook from all over the world. More than 35 million update their status each day, making that more than 55 million status updates each day. That’s intense.

2. Facebook first started out as “Facemash” in 2003 by a Harvard student named Mark Zuckerberg (name ring a bell?). He put photos of undergrads side by side so viewers could rank which one was hotter. Later, of course, Zuckerberg turned “Facemash” into “Facebook.”

3. The head of the Catholic Church in England and Wales said that Facebook and MySpace can lead children to commit suicide. Reason? They said such sites encourage teens to build brief relationships and dehumanize community life. So they are pretty much saying that children having too many short relationships will cause them to commit suicide. Hmm.

4. In January 2009, Burger King started an advertising campaign called “WHOPPER Sacrifice.” It rewarded Facebook users a free “Angry Whopper” if the users publicly deleted ten friends. The poor friends would then receive a message telling them that they were deleted for a free hamburger. I wonder how that worked out. Are you worth deleting for a Whopper?

5. The average Facebook users spend more than 55 minutes a day on the site. I know I probably spend way more! The average users also write 25 comments each month and use the Like button nine times a month. Again, I’m pretty sure I do more, as do many college students find themselves doing. Next time you should try counting.

6. Girls can be prone to anxiety and depression by talking too much to their friends on Facebook about the same problem. It’s called “co-rumination,” and can lead the girls to an unhealthy obsession about their problem. I guess if you talk to them face-to-face every day about the same problem, you don’t get quite as obsessed?

7. Syria, China, Vietnam and Iran have banned Facebook. Figures.

8. Facebook was first created for college students, but now users over the age of 26 take up 60 percent of the total U.S. Facebook population.

9. Facebook seems to have become a social network to a criminal finder. Both citizens and police departments are using Facebook more and more to catch suspected criminals. Better watch out what you put up on Facebook!

10. To add to number nine, a recent survey of 500 top colleges found that 10 percent of admissions officers said that they looked at social networking sites like Facebook to evaluate applicants. Of that 10 percent, 38 percent did not like what they saw. Good thing we’ve all gotten accepted to Knox! We’re safe…but we should probably watch out when we apply for jobs, graduate school or medical school in the future. You never know who might be searching your page!

Emily Park

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