Facebook used to be just about poking friends and throwing sheep. Since those innocent days, it has grown into something of a monster.
At its heart, it means well – a great way of connecting with long-lost friends or faraway relatives.
But like most things that grow into an almost impossible size, there are plenty of things wrong with it. Youngsters spend way too much time interacting via mobile or computer rather than face-to-face. Adults, too, are often guilty of burying their heads in their laptop or tablet.
As Twitter has grown and grown, Facebook has found its monopoly challenged and like all good rivalries, there are those that prefer one social medium to another. As it is, I think there is a place for both – although my flag is marked more in the Twitter corner.
Last week, that was challenged as Facebook came fighting back with something so breathtakingly simple. It all started with just seven words and a link: “Here’s my Facebook movie. Find yours at . . .”
You were then transformed into your life on Facebook, a mix of photos and words from the day you signed up. Okay, it’s a sample of your life, but the snapshot alone was enough to tug at heart strings and bring back amazing memories.
Photos, some poignant, some embarrassing, were interspersed with popular status updates and shared items. For me, it brought back the birth of my two sons, playing at Portman Road the night I met Tulisa (don’t ask). While those memories alone were enough to have me sold on the concept, to mark Facebook’s 10th anniversary, I then found myself immersed in everyone else’s ‘story’. Some were obvious, my wife and best mates were the next clicks, but I found myself pretty much viewing every video I came across. Like all the best viral marketing ploys – at its heart it was promoting Facebook after all – my timeline was soon blitzed.
The videos never grew tired, I still find myself clicking on mine a week after its debut, and the emotions it touches as a grid of square photos which complete the film are genius.
View your video by signing in and visiting https://facebook.com/lookback/