What Is Facebook.com and Why Is It Useful?

Pros and Cons of Joining Facebook

Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg delivers a keynote address during the Facebook f8 conference in 2011 in San Francisco. Justin Sullivan/Getty Images News/Getty Images

Facebook is a great way to keep up with what friends and family are doing. Once you add a contact (called a "friend") to your Facebook friend list you can see when they are updating their activities by calling up their profile page or finding their posts in your news feed. Join Facebook groups to meet people like you or browse the profiles to find new friends. Facebook's classmates and co-worker searches help you connect with people from your past and present. 



  • Keep track of friends: Facebook tells you when your friends are updating their profiiles or have posted news on their website.
  • Photo album: Add photos and photo albums to your Facebook profile.
  • Excellent search and browse: Search and browse for people on Facebook using just about any search features.
  • News aggregator: "Like" news outlets you want to keep up with and they will post updates in your news feed, which is an easy way to keep up with what's going on in the world.



  • No Music: You cannot add music to your Facebook profile.
  • No Video: You also cannot add video to your Facebook profile.
  • No Chatroom: There's no general chatroom feature on Facebook, but it has an IM feature though, called "Chat." You can see a list of who's available to chat on your news feed page.
  • Privacy concerns: Facebook has addressed many privacy issues and users can set up their profiles so they limit access to others. But profile pages get hacked and many have worries about privacy since personal information is on the site.

Reviews of Facebook (the Good and the Bad)



Cost: Free

Parents permission policy:

From Facebook's Terms page:

  • "This Site is intended solely for Users who are thirteen (13) years of age or older, and any registration by, use of or access to the Site by anyone under 13 is unauthorized, unlicensed and in violation of these Terms of Use. By using the Service or the Site, you represent and warrant that you are 13 or older and that you agree to and to abide by all of the terms and conditions of this Agreement. The Company may terminate your membership, delete your profile and any content or information that you have posted on the Site and/or prohibit you from using or accessing the Service or the Site (or any portion, aspect or feature of the Service or the Site) for any reason, at any time in its sole discretion, with or without notice, including without limitation if it believes that you are under 13."

Profile page: Has lots of features to help you keep in touch with your Facebook friends and add new ones.Add information about you and tag your friends so you can keep up on what they are doing.

Photos:  Add photos and photo albums to your Facebook page. 

Blog: Their is a blog feature for users. You can even add photos to your blog. If you use the tag feature in the blog to add someone else's Facebook name, your friend will get this blog entry added to their blog too. If you have a blog on another site you can add that blog to your Facebook blog by adding the URL of the blog. Then your offsite blog will show up in the Facebook blog space. 

Finding friends: Finding friends, both old and new, should be a breeze with Facebook's advanced search features. You can also find new friends just by browsing profiles. The browse feature also has a general search function that you can use to sort people by age, gender and interests.

Old friends - Find out if people in your email address book are on Facebook just by putting your email address and email password into this tool. It will then search the database for the email addresses stored in your email's address book to see if any of your friends are already on Facebook. There is also a classmates search and a co-worker search.

Connect to friends: Once you find someone you want to be friends with, just click on the button on that person's profile page to add them as your friend. 

Groups: There are group pages on Facebook. Find groups with other people with the same interests as you and click on the "to join." link You will be kept up to date on what's happening in the group from your news feed through posts or notifications on the left-hand side under "Groups."

Comments on blogs and profiles: You can easily add comments to people's blogs and posts.

News Feed:  When you log in you will see posts from friends and pages you've liked based on your interests.

Are there graphics and templates available?: You cannot change the way your profile page looks. You can only add information, join groups, add friends and add photos.

Music: You can not add music to your Facebook profile.

Email Accounts:  Send and receive messages with other Facebook members via Facebook Messenger. You can also "Poke" them to let them know you are there or thinking about them.

The Beginning of Facebook

In early 2004 Mark Zuckerberg founded Facebook, then at thefacebook.com. At that time Zuckerberg was a sophomore at Harvard University. The name for Facebook came from the publications that some colleges pass out to students at the beginning of the year to help students get to know one another better, called a Facebook.

In the beginning it was for Harvard only. Facebook was created as a way for Mark Zuckerberg and other Harvard students to keep in touch over the Internet and get to know each other better. Facebook became so popular that is was soon opened up to other colleges. By the end of the next year it was also open to high schools. In September 2006 it was opened to the general internet public, as long as you were 13 and older and had a valid email address. Later, you could have either an email address or mobile phone to sign up.

Facebook's Investors

Facebook's investors that have included PayPal co-founder Peter Thiel, Accel Partners and Greylock Partners. In 2007 Microsoft jumped in and invested $246 million for a 1.6 percent share in Facebook. The next month Hong Kong billionaire Li Ka-shing made a large investment. Yahoo! and Google both offered to buy Facebook, but as of September 2016, Zuckerberg has continued to say it's not for sale.

How Facebook Makes Money

Facebook mainly makes its money from advertising revenue. That's why you'll see banner ads on Facebook. That's how they can manage to create such a great service to you for free.

Facebook's Many Features

Over time Facebook has added many new features to its social network. You'll now find a news feed, more privacy features, Facebook notes, the ability to add images to your blog and comments, importing other blogs into Facebook and instant messaging.