Joining the digital revolution.
Yes, I too fought against using Facebook, but here I am, a happy user; keeping up with the cool kids and connecting to old friends and colleagues. But it's not all fun and games; although I know a few people who spend way too much time feeding virtual fish and growing fictitious gardens. Facebook has become yet another medium where people and organizations share information.
Today, I'll show you how to subscribe to Facebook. For those who have already done this, you can take a break from my jottings for this week. Why not add me to your Facebook friends? <smile>
Subscribing to Facebook:
Have you brought a pillow, blanket, snacks, a map, a survival kit, overnight bag and your favourite stuffed animal? If not, I'll wait here until you do. It's not that bad, but there are many steps to subscribing to Facebook. The most difficult would be the security check, however we'll tackle that together. Just stay calm, relax and we'll take this one step at a time.
Let's open the Facebook page:
You should be able to activate the link above to access the page, or type within your browser of choice.
Once at the site, Press CONTROL+HOME to get to the top of the page. Press INSERT+F5 to generate a list of form fields and finally, press F and ENTER to bring you to the "First Name" edit field. Still with me? Good. If not, take your time at reading the above instructions. I don't want to lose anyone on this crazy ride. Hey, put your seatbelt on back there.
Okay, let's type in your first name. Remember, that your forms mode must be turned on. If you haven't heard the words "forms mode on" or a high pitched beep, then press ENTER and we're good to go.
Now TAB to the "Last Name" field and type in your last name. Forms mode should still be on.
TAB again and type in your email address.
TAB again and type in a password. It should be something longer than 6 characters.
Guess what happens now? Yes, TAB again and we get to choose what sex you are. Use your Up and DOWN ARROW keys for this.
Next we TAB to the birthday section. Let's take a breather for a quick security tip.
Just a general social networking tip, create a bit of an online persona for yourself out there. You still want people to be able to know it's you, but it is not a good idea to tell anyone your real birth date. It is too valuable a source of personal information to give away. So if you would like to be a few months younger or older, or you always wanted to be an Aquarius, here's your chance. I wouldn't change your name or the year of your birth date as that is how those long lost high school buddies will find you. Okay, back to work.
The first option is the month. Press the first letter of your month or pseudo month. Next tab brings us to day press the number which corresponds to the day. You may have to press the number a few times to get to the correct day.
Finally we TAB to the year. Press PAGEDOWN to jump around 30 years and then the UP and DOWN ARROWS to choose your birth year. We're almost done.
Press the PC Cursor to get out of forms mode. For laptop users, this is done by pressing the CAPSLOCK+semicolon.
Review what you have filled in. Make sure the email address is correct as Facebook will use this later on.
TAB until you get to the "Sign Up" button and press ENTER. If everything is okay, you will proceed to the next step. Otherwise, you will get a list of errors which is found after the "sign up" button. If this is the case, press the letter b until you Hear "sign up" and press the DOWN ARROW to read the errors. Then Press F until you land on the erroneous field and correct it.
Okay, here is where it gets tricky. Hold on, don't run away. You've made it this far. Due to online abuses of the Facebook site, the Facebook team has had to set up digital security checks in the form of Captchas. You may well ask, what is a Captcha. Well, that's a good question and here's what I found on Wikipedia:
A CAPTCHA is a type of challenge-response test used in computing to ensure that the response is not generated by a computer.
In other words, Facebook wants to make sure that you are a sentient being and not some sort of computer program trying to create a bunch of Facebook accounts for fun. Okay, back to our regularly scheduled program.
We need to beat this Captcha. You have a couple of options:
- Get someone to help you type in the blurred words on the screen, or,
Use the audio Captcha to do it yourself.
The audio Captcha is a phrase taken from old movies. TAB until you hear the words: "an audio Captcha" and press ENTER. Your cursor will be moved into the edit area. Press ENTER again to enable forms mode. Listen carefully to what is being played and type as much of the text as you can. The audio sample will be played twice. Press ENTER when done. If you are successful, you will be brought to the next step. If not, an error will occur and you'll need to repeat the audio Captcha.
What, there's a next step?
I know, you're getting tired of my ramblings. I'm getting tired of typing, so we're even. Facebook tries to connect you right away with people you may know. It's sort of creepy how they do it, as I used a fictitious name, but an old email address and they were still able to find people I knew.
Use your UP and DOWN ARROW keys to go through the list. The "Add Friend" button is located after each person's information. Press ENTER on the ones that you want. Press ENTER on the "skip This Step" once you're done.
We won't spend too much time on this screen as my tip is already getting rather long. This is yet another way to find more friends and can be accessed from your home page. TAB until you hear "Skip This Step" and press ENTER on it.
Personal Info Screen:
This is where things get a bit tricky. Remember, the internet remembers all. You don't need to fill out this screen, unless you really want to. This particular screen asks for your high school, university and company that you work for. This is information that Facebook uses to find people that you may know. Filling out "CNIB" as your company would help you find other CNIB employees and the CNIB Facebook fan page. You can skip this step by tabbing to the "skip" button and pressing ENTER.
Yet another screen:
This is the final screen of possible matches for you. It looks similar to the first one you encountered. You can either choose people from that list, or go directly to the "Skip" link.
A profile picture:
You can either Upload a picture of yourself, or take a quick snapshot with your webcam. I will not go into this. TAB to the "skip" link and press ENTER.
One last step:
Oh oh, was that you snoring? Okay, Facebook wants you to confirm who you really are. You can never be too careful these days. Remember the email address you put in at the start of this tip? Well, the system has sent you a message which you'll have to go find within your inbox.
It will be entitled Facebook Account Confirmation. Press ENTER on the link contained inside this message.
And you're done!
What? Really? We're all done? Yes, the subscribing portion of Facebook is complete. Congratulate yourself.
Investigate Facebook with all its bells and whistles. For those of you ready to keep going on Facebook, you can continue on to www.facebook.com\myCNIB and for those of you just learning we will go there next week. We will also be looking at alternative ways of accessing the Facebook service. Here's a handy link to that entry.
Surviving on Facebook: http://goo.gl/0meOR