If you’re reading this article, chances are you most likely don’t have a Facebook account yet, or perhaps you had one a long time ago but you left disillusioned and now are weighing your options in order to decide whether to go back or not. Well, I’ve got several reasons why you should create a Facebook account. Now, obviously these aren’t going to apply to some extreme circumstances, like if you’ve gone “off the grid” (how are you reading this, anyway?) or people living in countries where Facebook is blocked, but these are some of the pros of creating a Facebook account for the vast majority of people.
Let’s just start be saying that you can’t use anything on Facebook unless you are registered with an account, so your bonus reason to create a Facebook account is that, unlike some other sites, Facebook is worthless for anyone who doesn’t have an account. Taking that as a given, here are five more reasons to sign up today.
Everyone else has one
I know, I know: “If everyone else jumped off a bridge, would you do it too?” But this is relevant to Facebook because of its nature as a social media platform. In other words, I wouldn’t be encouraging you to create an account on some unknown social network with hardly any users and no growth prospects; if you’re going to be choosey about your social media sites, the most logical thing is to go where there are more of your friends, family, and acquaintances with whom you would like to keep in contact.
Facebook is without a doubt the world’s most popular social network, with 1.7 billion active monthly users, and it just continues to grow. It’s staying strong as a solid, multipurpose social media site even as gimmicky competitors like SnapChat get the attention of the younger generations. If you have friends or family members whom you’d like to stay in touch with, there is a very good likelihood that they are already on Facebook. So why don’t you just create a Facebook account now and go find them?
Keep in touch and stay up to date
This is the crux of what Facebook is all about. When you create a Facebook account, it lets you stay abreast of what’s going on in the lives of all of your “friends”, and that’s a big advantage when so many of us live far away from our families these days. I have been able to watch my cousins in Michigan all the way from Florida as they get married, have babies, and watch those babies grow up. Not to mention all the awesome people I met when I did a semester abroad, which left me with Facebook friends from all over Europe and Northern Africa.
Staying in touch with these people through conventional means would have been nearly impossible and far more laborious (I actually remember receiving a Christmas card each year from my Michigan cousins’ family with a short note, a “Merry Christmas!” and their latest school portraits. That was basically the extent of our communication unless we happened to return up north for a vacation.)
And you’ll never miss a birthday again! You’ll see a little reminder in the sidebar telling you which of your friends has a birthday today, and it will let you easily write a happy birthday message without even leaving your feed.
Follow news stories and people of interest
My Facebook feed can essentially be summed up as wedding/baby pictures, pet photos/videos (sometimes baby + pet videos, which are the holy grail of internet content), and news or political opinion articles. Most major news and journalism organizations have their own official Facebook page, which you can follow and get the best articles that they decide to share on Facebook. There’s something for every possible political persuasion, from libertarian to communist and everything in between. Oh, and if you have a pet conspiracy theory, I guarantee you someone has created a page devoted to it already and would love for you to join.
When you create a Facebook account, not only can you follow what’s going on in your real-life friends and family’s lives, but you can also follow people who are of interest to you. Trevor Noah, Tomi Lahren, the POTUS, candidates for just about any political office, singers, actors, models, athletes… most of these people have a Facebook page that you can follow, participate in discussions with other followers, and always be on the up and up.
If you’re using the desktop version of Facebook (meaning on a computer, not a mobile device), you’ll see that you can chat via instant messenger with people in little windows that pop up from the bottom of the screen. But this format was a bit cumbersome for a mobile app, so the developers at Facebook decided to divide Facebook’s instant messenger and give it its own dedicated app: Facebook Messenger, sometimes known as FB Messenger or simply Messenger.
This freed up mobile users to do a lot of cool things in their instant messages that would have been difficult to squeeze in otherwise. For example, you can use Messenger to chat normally, but you can also make voice calls, even if you don’t have a cellular plan that includes calling; the calls are made over Wi-Fi, if available, or mobile data (unless you don’t have it or have it disabled). You can also do real-time video chats, kind of like “Face Time” on iPhones.
I personally was a little annoyed at first when they essentially “forced” me to download a separate app for messaging, but now I actually find that it’s quite convenient. Facebook Messenger has floating “chat heads”, which are like little bubbles that will hang out unobtrusively in the foreground (you can move them wherever you want), so you can keep doing whatever it is you’re doing and have easy access to your chats, instead of going into your list of open apps and re-opening the chat app.
And of course, like all things Facebook, you have to create a Facebook account in order to take advantage of their handy instant messaging mobile app.
Get easier sign up and sign on
Many apps and websites have learned from years of experience that people have to be really motivated in order to fill out a registration form. Sure, it only takes like 3 minutes, but it’s such a drag. And I have to give them my email address? Are they going to blow up my inbox with spam?
These sites have made a very smart decision to give visitors a one-step alternative to sign up for their website or service: Facebook sign on. This makes it much more likely for visitors to stay and actually sign up, and much easier for users to get whatever it is they wanted in the first place.
For example, if you wanted to create an Instagram account, you can do it with an email address and create yet another password to remember, or you can just tap the “Facebook” button and *poof*, account instantly created. Another example is if you’re reading a news story and want to leave a comment – these sites almost always require you to have an account in order to prevent comment abuse, but many of them now have the option of logging in with your Facebook account. So creating a Facebook account is, in a sense, creating an express lane to the rest of the internet world!
Now, if you’ve made it this far, you probably found at least one of the reasons above compelling enough that you have decided you want to create a Facebook account. In case you aren’t sure how to do that, here are some very simple instructions:
Facebook will walk you through these last steps; you can skip them if you want, but it’s an easy way to start connecting with people you know. Facebook is almost creepily good at knowing who you might know based on your email contacts or any information you choose to provide about where you went to school, where you live, where you have worked in the past, etc. So have fun connecting, and welcome to Facebook!