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Facebook Update

facebook avatars So much for my goal of becoming a more organized blogger in 2012. After two wicked storms featuring wild winds that delivered snow and freezing rain and toppled trees over the power lines leaving us without power for almost two days each time – I’m back.  I have trashed my schedule and started over. 

As I’m still contemplating which social networks to invest my time and energy into this year, I’m keeping my eyes open for Facebook News and Google Plus news.  Here are some interesting Facebook updates.

Coren Apicella, a research fellow in the Christakis lab at Harvard Medical School, spent the summer of 2010 traveling around the remote Lake Eyasi region of Tanzania with the Hadza, one of the last remaining populations of hunter-gatherers on the planet. Their lives offer a window into our past—and clues about the evolution of cooperation. Within the Hadza community, cooperators cluster together, preventing self-interested individuals from destroying the social fabric. What’s more, the architecture of the Hadza social network matches that of modern social networks. These findings were published January 26, 2012, in Nature.

Dawn of Social Networks: Hunter-gatherers Provide Clues About the Evolution of Cooperation

via Facebook’s roots go way, way back

Europe is dominating the Facebook numbers, and has the most users out of any continent, with the number currently standing at 223 million, followed by North America at 219 million, and Asia and 202 million users.

via Facebook is Killing Local Social Networks around the World.

The US Federal Bureau of Investigation has quietly released details of plans to continuously monitor the global output of Facebook, Twitter and other social networks, offering a rare glimpse into an activity that the FBI and other government agencies are reluctant to discuss publicly. The plans show that the bureau believes it can use information pulled from social media sites to better respond to crises, and maybe even to foresee them. via FBI releases plans to monitor social networks


How has online social networking changed communication? In online social networking, talking to strangers has become the norm. Every day bloggers seek out other bloggers who share common interests while they evade and avoid spammers and scammers.

The key element of the Hadza model is the ability for all participants who are known to one another face-to-face to sever relationships at will. The study’s findings describe elements of social network structures that may have been present early in human history and suggest how our ancestors may have formed ties based on shared interests and the inclination to cooperate.

The foundation for social networking is cooperation and trust.  In an online community there is a difference from the Hadza model. The use of pseudonyms means we can sever relationships with people we have never met face-to-face and begin under a new identity in the same social network or in another one. Have you ever severed online relationships and started anew under another identity?

20 thoughts on “Facebook Update

  1. “The use of pseudonyms means we can sever relationships with people we have never met face-to-face and begin under a new identity in the same social network or in another one. Have you ever severed online relationships and started anew under another identity?”

    Wonder how many people will answer your question. I prefer chatting up casually with regular bloggers who do reveal a bit about who they really are, even if it’s only a common hobby interest, like blogging and share ideas/experiences in a respectful way. That’s all I expect.

    I agree that measuring readers’ behaviours by organizations to gauge “customer” base through twitter, facebook is very difficult –except now an organization needs to be abit more alert. Or maybe just knowing readers’ rumours, dissing, etc. just puts a company’s energy in the wrong direction at times –meaning over-analyzing, over-worrying.

    Otherwise we need to focus on real face-to-face relationships.

    • Your second paragraph accurately describes my own expectations as well. And, you won’t surprised to hear that I strongly believe we all need to focus on face-to-face relationships. We have both lost family members and we are keenly aware of how important it is to make the time to be with those we love before their gone or we’re gone.

      I have never deliberately terminated relationships by deleting a site and/or username and walking away and then starting fresh. However, I’m thinking there must be some people who have done that.

  2. “…cooperators cluster together, preventing self-interested individuals from destroying the social fabric.”

    Sounds like the Hadza have a very effective anti-spamming strategy!

    Good to have you back, TT, sorry for all your weather hassles, sounds like you’re a pretty good hunter-gatherer yourself (water, firewood, AA batteries for electric blanket, etc). : )

    • Yes the Hadza seem to have had spam and troll prevention behaviors in place. lol :D
      The weather has improved – thank goodness. My husband is away and I’m running the show. I’m so tired.

  3. I’ve never severed an online relationship that I can recall. However, having lived Haiti for a year, I empathize with your struggle last week. It’s incredible how dependent we are on electricity!

    • Hi Kathryn,
      I’ve never severed online relationships but some have faded. I can’t imagine what living in Haiti would be like. Being without power means everyday is a struggle just to get through. Cooking on the wood stove is not fun. Ironically the telephone lines did not go down when the power lines did. So the phone kept ringing as we tried to get all the survival work done. I currently have two family members who are very ill. One is in hospital and the other is waiting to go in. My nerves are raw and I’m exhausted. I can’t wait for my husband’s business trip to be over so I can get some sleep and don’t have to manage all this alone.

  4. I spend all day on social network sites as part of my job but translating this into meaningful engagement and business is difficult to prove. Are we all doing this because everyone is?

    • I think you may be right. There is a “flocking” mentality involved and social networking can be addictive. One can spend hours and even days engaged in meaningless chat. Hobby bloggers like me are not blogging for an income. I actually pay to keep ads off my blog. I buy local and I’m not into brands at all, so engaging me in any discussion re: business online is not going to happen unless we already have a face to face relationship offline.

  5. hi Timethief,
    (Ignore my name, it’s me -Gigi). You know me from my dog, right? =)

    I have a question about website forums and thought you were the perfect person to ask but I have no idea where to ask this question. Is this an ok place?


    • Hi there,
      “is this an okay place?”
      Most bloggers have trouble securing an active group of blog centered regulars who comment. Forums on blogs or elsewhere are not successful unless there is a critical mass of regulars who post almost every day. We cannot embed forums into free hosted blogs. What we can do is register a forum online and then link to it from your blogs. By creating a custom menu we can also include a custom link in it directly to the forum we create. Here’s a custom menu walk through.

      I’d rather answer support questions on the support forums than on my blog. That’s why I removed my email address and my contact form but I’ll answer you hear this one time so ask away. :)

      • Howdy,
        I guess my “Ask Timethief” section on your website isn’t going to fly…? Too many questions! I will take you up on the one time, thanks.

        This isn’t for my site. I’m just curious about those forums that have a status section by people’s names. It will say “new/junior/full/senior” member by their name and the status depends on how often they post. I’m wondering two things. One, what’s your opinion on this format. And two, is there any documentation or studies for internet forums/formats that show how this type or other type works or doesn’t work well? THANKS, Timethief ;o)

        • Hi again,
          No an “ask Timethief” section here is not going to fly. I spend hours almost every day answering support forum questions. Aside from those hours I work and I also blog.

          I don’t have any experience with forums such as the ones you describe. So I’m sorry but I don’t have any leads I can give you to any studies re:online forum formats.

  6. What a start to the year for you, in all sorts of ways. That we get to share certain of our trials and tribulations which indeed take us back to our primeval roots. All best to you!

    I have so many mixed feelings about the whole social media business. My friends seem to think I am Mistress Techie (!) but these same friends forget I am stranded, so many time zones away from the face time with friends and family. And Facebook is not top of my list . . .

    • Hi Patti,
      It was not auspicious start to the year for me but I have high hopes for improvement. I too have mixed feelings about social networking. My blogging time is limited as I have so much to do to earn an income and a home life to maintain too. Relationships with family and close friends are where I invest most of my free time. Facebook does not top my list of social networking sites. I’m more attracted to Google Plus than FB, but I really don’t know how to manage my time any better than I do now and social networking is a time suck.

  7. Sorry you have had a difficult start to the year.

    But what an interesting post. I wonder whether Mark Zuckerberg read about the Hadza? I recall he was interested in psychology as well as in computers at college.

    • Hi Dave,
      Last week was a terrible week for us. Shipments both in and out came to a halt. No power means no water as we have a deep well submersible pump that needs electricity to operate. We had to carry in water and we had to clear our very long driveway so emergency vehicles could get in and we could get out. Add on splitting kindling and firewood and carrying it in and we had a reality check. For millenniums humans were solely primarily on getting through each day and that’s where we were at. It was a humbling and very frustrating break.

      As For Zuckerberg Deseret News quotes him saying:

      “All of these problems at the end of the day are human problems,” he said. “I think that that’s one of the core insights that we try to apply to developing Facebook. What [people are] really interested in is what’s going on with the people they care about. It’s all about giving people the tools and controls that they need to be comfortable sharing the information that they want. If you do that, you create a very valuable service. It’s as much psychology and sociology as it is technology.”

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