Super Lawyers
William C. Altreuter

Wednesday, January 12, 2011

I didn't understand Facebook for a long time, but once I got a smartphone I started to get it. Facebook fascinates me because people in their 20's and younger- people who grew up with the internet-- use it as the internet. It isn't a site, it's a platform, and in some ways it goes beyond being either. For example, consider this: over the weekend my daughter got married. The photographer told us he would mail us a CD with his pictures on it. Some friends said they would email their digital pix. Other people have flikr sites, and Snapfish sites with photos.  But the way it's done now is actually like this:  one of Mrs. Smart's attendants Facebook friended me the next day, which gave me access to dozens of her photographs, all neatly tagged and captioned. I guess she did it while she was at the airport. What's really remarkable about that is that for her it wasn't remarkable at all- this is how people who know how to use Facebook interact. Another example: because I am Facebook friends with several of the people who were at this event, I can see who among the guests who weren't acquainted before friended each other after. This gives me a kind of insight into the relationships among the guests that I probably could never have had before. Serious Facebook users chat, and track their friends and basically use it as a form of socializing. For them email is for work, and the rest of the web is a secondary destination.

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