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Created by former Harvard student, Mark Zuckerberg, and his schoolmates, Facebook was launched in 2004. The website was originally targeted towards the Harvard student body but beginning in 2006, the website became available to anyone older than thirteen with an e-mail address. Once users are registered, they are able to create a profile and add other user’s, known as “friends”. When creating his/her profile, users are able to add a profile picture and fill in information such as where he/she was born, what university, if any, they have attended, and where they currently or previously have worked. Through entering this information, users are more easily drawn to “People They May Know”, a section of Facebook that draws users to other Facebook users that they may already know. Facebook is also a tool for organizing groups. Users may join common-interest user groups, organized by school or college,workplace, or other characteristics. Friends can also be categorize into lists such as “Family”,”Close Friends”, or “People From Work”. Friends on Facebook can also communicate with one another on various features such as messenger, voice calls, and video calls.
Facebook users are not limited to just a single profile picture; users are able to upload an unlimited amount of photos into customized albums on their profile. Accompanying the ability to upload photos, users are also to personalize their profiles by “liking” certain pages. Through liking certain fan pages of books, music, movies, etc, user’s interests will be displayed on their personalized profile. While users are able to “Like” their interests, they may also simply “Like” other friends’ or pages’ status updates and photos. If user’s generally like a page or a friend’s updates, they may also “Follow” the user. Through “following”, users are able to select options that indicate he/she would like to see the followed user’s posts first on his/her own news feed.
With the overwhelming popularity of Facebook, came the creation of the Facebook application. Sharing updates and catching up with friends is faster than ever with the application, launched in 2011, the application currently has more than a billion downloads. With the use of the application, Facebook users are able to save mobile data when browsing through their personalized Facebook feed. Features of the application include receiving typical Facebook notifications from friend’s likes and/or comments, but all conveniently in one application. Users are also able to share updates, photos, and videos in a quick post through the application. Users wishing to save data, and have quick access to his or her friend’s updates are able to download the application from IOS, Android, and Windows platforms.