Facebook needs a ‘Sympathy’ button

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A school friend's mom passed away last week. He posted the news on Facebook with a short, dignified note, giving brief details of how his mother had died and information about the funeral. Feeling for his loss, I started to write, "So sorry to hear your sad news..."

But before I pressed "Enter," I scrolled through the comments others had already posted — passionate eulogies and anecdotes from people who really knew my friend's mom, celebrating her spirit and uniqueness. Suddenly my well-meaning comment seemed trite below such heartfelt words. As I deleted it, I wished there were another way to let my friend know I'd seen his news, and that I was feeling for him Read more...

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9 things you need to quit crowdsourcing on Facebook

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Zuck might have got away with crowdsourcing his New Year's resolution on Facebook, but us mere mortals have to be a bit more careful when it comes to soliciting our online buddies

To avoid boring your friends to tears, looking lazy or desperate, or even worse, putting your security at risk, we suggest following our guidelines on what not to crowdsource.

Have a read through our list of don'ts below, and stop yourself from making the same mistakes.

1. What to eat

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"I just don't know what to have for breakfast / brunch / lunch / afternoon tea / dinner /…" Believe us when we say no one cares about your gastronomic dilemma. Just make a decision and stop boring us half to death with your culinary quandaries Read more...

More about Facebook, Social Media, Features, Etiquette, and How To

5 ways to take control of your Facebook News Feed

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Whether it's never-ending posts from annoying "friends" with verbal diarrhea, or repetitive links to stupid survey sites, the truth is that sometimes spending time on Facebook is more irritating than productive

The bad news is that Facebook's algorithms to determine what appears in your News Feed are a closely guarded secret. The social media giant simply says, "The stories that show in your News Feed are influenced by your connections and activity on Facebook."

But there is hope — you have the power to tweak a few settings under the hood.

More about Facebook, How To, Social Media, Features, and Tips And Tricks

Comedy as activism: Why laughing together beats mourning alone

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"Humor is laughing at what you haven't got when you ought to have it."

This famous first sentence of Langston Hughes' 1966 essay "A Note on Humor" still rings true today — especially for comedians whose work tackles serious issues, when "it" can mean anything from racial justice to gender equality to LGBT rights.

Humor can address these important topics in a powerful but nonthreatening way. Jokes help us confront the world's most pressing issues, inspiring laughs to inspire change.

Comedy's role in raising awareness is extremely prevalent right now, amid the #BlackLivesMatter protests that continue to sweep the United States. Stand-up comics such as W. Kamau Bell, a self-declared socio-political comedian who doesn't shy away from charged topics, have addressed police brutality and the events in Ferguson, Missouri, and elsewhere. Read more...

More about Facebook, Twitter, Social Media, Features, and Comedy

6 browser extensions to improve your Facebook experience

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Facebook addicts, rejoice — you don't have to be on Facebook to still be on Facebook.

With the help of browser extensions, you can read your News Feed, send messages to friends and post status updates from your browser's toolbar. Extensions can also improve your experience on the Facebook site itself with special tools, such as Photo Zoom, which magnifies any photo your cursor hovers over.

See the list below for more handy Facebook extensions.

Have something to add to this story? Share it in the comments.

BONUS: The Evolution of the Facebook Profile
Read more...

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What’s Really the Difference Between Facebook Pages, Groups and Profiles?

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With several overlapping features, Facebook's Pages, groups and profiles leave many users confused

Together, these three functions help us stay connected, but each has its own purpose and works for different types of content. Whether you want to stay in touch with friends, promote your brand or meet others with the same hobbies, we can help you determine which tool will most effectively meet your needs

Below, we highlight the differences between Facebook Pages, groups and profiles to help you understand when and how to use each one Read more...

What's a profile?

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8 Essential Tips to Survive a Breakup Without Deleting Facebook

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No matter how it went down, breaking up is tough. And let's be real, Facebook doesn't make the emotional aftermath any easier

The social network, which often preserves the digital remains of relationships, has given the post-breakup blues a whole new meaning. During the healing process, many tend to deactivate and delete their accounts to get over their heartbreak faster

But for those who want to pick themselves up and move on without entirely eliminating Facebook from their lives, we're here to help. Below, we've rounded up eight expert tips to help you survive a breakup without deactivating or deleting Facebook. Read more...

More about Facebook, How To, Social Media, Features, and Love

8 Awkward Times the Media Tried to Explain the Internet

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It's easy to forget that the Internet is only 25 years old.

In a short period of time, we've quickly grown accustomed to online jargon and all things in cyberspace. But when the World Wide Web was first introduced in 1989, many found it particularly puzzling. As the Internet has evolved, its meaning and descriptions have changed

We took a look at how the media has covered the Internet from its onset to present day. Some moments are awkward, while others are flat-out hilarious

From the definition of blogs to the rise of Twitter, here are eight memorable times the media tried to explain the Internet. Read more...

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Beyond Millennials: How to Reach Generation Z

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Millennials are so last year.

As the generation that inspired countless thinkpieces eases out of the public eye, marketers are honing in on the next wave of consumers: Generation Z. These folks, born in 1995 or later, make up 25.9% of the United States' population, contribute $44 billion to the American economy and differ from their predecessors in a few key ways.

While millennials — a.k.a. Generation Y — grew up alongside the World Wide Web, Gen Z is growing up with social media. This shapes everything from their academics to after-school activities, with more than half of Gen Z using YouTube for research projects and a third collaborating with classmates and watching lessons online. Read more...

More about Facebook, Social Media, Features, Generation Y, and Millennials

16 Creepiest Targeted Facebook Ads

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Nope, you aren't the only person who's been inundated with oddly specific Facebook ads.

Whether they're for T-shirts and hoodies touting the dominance of those who share your last name, or products for a private health issue, it's easy to find ads that know as much about you as your friends and family do. As uncomfortable as this might be, it's a byproduct of data mining and tracking cookies, both of which provide ad companies with ample information to post relevant pitches

When a business creates a Facebook ad, it's given several options to help narrow down its audience. It starts with basic demographic data like age range, gender and location Read more...

More about Facebook, Advertising, Ads, Social Media, and Features
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