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Sunday, October 05, 2008

Facebook Fever (Demam Facebook)

Sometime in September 2007, I was invited from a friend in Bangkok asking me to try on new online networking called facebook. I was telling myself, "please, not another myspace, friendster and those f**king networking forums" that spams my email. "I have already hundreds email to delete everyday." But I subscribed to it, anyway, simply because I need to keep the discussion going with my counterpart in Bangkok and other part of the world.

Then, when it comes to October, we were planning a mass rally, the famous "BERSIH Rally". We were discussing the what are the methods available virtually to heat the campaign and getting the message across, besides everyday updating our official BERSIH website.

We came up with facebook. The people who are responsible (officially) in facebook campaign are Hilmi, Elizabeth and Robert Kee.Hilmi and Eli spent some nights to design their music video and uploaded it on to facebook.

I also use this method communicating with other comrades for smaller scale rally infront of embassies. We manage to do it in Jakarta, Seoul, Bangkok, Ulam Bator, Manila and London. I am quite impressive.

Some f the volunteers also did a global forum that pressures for clean and fair elections.

After the success of the rally, Malaysiakini realizes the effectiveness and wrote an article about it. They quoted some of our job in facebook as well.

Some politicians, either they are junior politicians, inexperience politicians, reluctant politicians, politicians wannabes promote their campaign through facebook.I shall not link to any of these examples because some of them are very sensitive and feel they are not junior, inexperience and reluctant. Normnally I will receive some nasty sms expressing their 'dissapointment. What the heck !

The next PM, Anwar Ibrahim also uses facebook to expres his mission statement. And of course, some hardcores are doing it for him.

Games? Sorry I will not accept any of the invitations. That includes super poke, zombies, vampire and what not.

Yes, you can also send greeting cards via facebook. It also reminds you on your friends birthdays.

A group of artist also uploaded their talk show in facebook. It is called Fairly Current Show. Bila nak interview aku?

An active blogger and a friend of mine, Nizam Zakaria mentioned that he has slowly move away from blogs and promotes his work through facebook.

Last Ramadhan, my friend managed to organize a buka puasa re-union via facebook. He is trying very hard to get in-touch with his old school friends until facebook did it all. Marvelous eh?

Why is it so effective?

Message that you sent to any of your 'friends' listed in your facebook will reach them via their email. So, you will not miss anything, unless you skip checking your email.

In management, they call it 'pull strategy' unlike other online networks where you need to go to their websites to update yourself. Facebook forces you to check your messages (if there is any).

The History

When Facebook was launched by Mark Zuckerberg in 2004 while attending Harvard University as a sophomore, it was designed as a way for college students to connect with each other. Users created a personal page and were able to accept or send out electronic 'friend' requests for people to be included in their networks. People who were 'friends' were able to keep tabs on people in their network, send messages and even connect with friends of friends. It was like an exclusive club, since it was open only to those with certain email addresses.

But as Facebook's popularity soared, its founders sought to expand its audience. In 2005, it allowed high school students to sign on. But it was the 2006 decision to open it up to the general public that drew howls from its original audience and now facebook is the largest social networking with more than 100 million facebookers and has made Zuckerberg a young billionaire.

Facebook Blacberry

Now, some cellphones also provide facebook softwares. It means, now you can even facebooking via cellphones. When I am away, which I always do now, I will update my status, photos, and responds to facebook messages thorugh my blackberry.

I also experienced an event whereby one of my photos became a really hot issue. The caption was not meant to provoke anybody but it turned otherwise....

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