There are over 2.41 billion users on Facebook, as of June 2019. A total of 1.59 billion people in the world logon to Facebook on a daily basis. To top off these staggering numbers, a total of 41% of people aged 65 or older uses Facebook on a daily basis. This is a worldwide figure. Of the total Facebook users in the United States (58.3 million), 21.1% are aged 65 or older.
More and more seniors are logging on to this popular social media site every day. The site (or app) helps seniors keep in touch with their family members more closely than they would without it. Seniors that use the site are able to see updates from their kids, grandchildren, friends, and other family. Text updates from the people they care about, photos they might not have seen otherwise, and even videos. They may even be able to reconnect with people from their past. No matter how you chock it up, Facebook can be a beneficial tool for seniors.
This will be a crash course for seniors, so that they can get to know Facebook and learn how to post, interact, and protect themselves on this social media website.
Setting Up an Account
Before you can use Facebook, you have to setup an account. After going to www.facebook.com, a screen will appear with a sign up form to fill out. Put in your first and last name, phone or email, a password, your birthday, and your gender. Then hit the “sign up” button. You will then receive a notification in either the email or your phone number to make sure that it’s a working, active number or email. Click the link it provides to verify and then move onto the next step.
You will be presented with a screen that asks you to add friends, so go ahead and search for people you know. A “friend” in Facebook terms is someone that you want to be part of your Facebook. The more people you find that are friends or family, the more that will show up that could also be applicable.
The next part will be setting up your profile. You profile is your specific page. It is everything about you, like your information, friends, photos, videos, posts, and more. Your profile also contains your wall. Your wall is kind of like your own personal newsfeed. When you make a post, it’ll be saved here. Other people can post on your wall if you allow it.
With your profile, you’ll want a photo. There’s a circle shape in the top left corner of the page. This is where your personal photo will go. There’s also a cover photo, which is the big rectangular box at the top of the profile. You can add whatever you want there. This space is really good for group family photos.
There’s also an “about” section on your profile. This contains whatever information you want people to know. You can leave it as blank as you want, or fill it in all the way. The choice is yours.
There’s a tab at the top of the page called “Home”. This is basically a newsfeed of all your friends’ posts. Anything they post will go here. You can sort it by most recent or most popular. If you can’t find one of your friends’ posts here, simply use the search feature to find them and then go look at their personal profile, it’ll be there.
Let’s say that you’re on the home section of Facebook. You see your grandchild just posted a photo of him playing baseball. How do you interact with it? Well, there are a couple ways. The first is what’s called a reaction. As you look at the post, notice that there’s three buttons at the bottom of the post. There’s “Like”, “Comment”, and “Share”. These are the ways you can interact with a post.
Liking a post means just that, that you like it. However, Facebook has had more reactions for a couple years now. To do a different reaction will depend on how you’re using Facebook. If you’re using it on a computer, like a desktop or laptop, you’ll want to hover and hold your mouse over the like button for a moment. If you’re using the Facebook app on your phone or tablet, you’ll want to press and hold the like button for a moment. A small grouping of reactions will then pop up, giving you the opportunity to show even more emotion to their post. The reactions are: Like, love, Haha (laughing), wow, sad, and angry. Click the one that represents the emotion you’re feeling for the post in question.
Commenting on a post is a good way to interact with someone’s post. Click the comment button and you’ll be able to type in words, post a photo within the comments, put a “sticker” (a type of photo), insert an emoji (another type of interaction photo), and add a gif (a type of moving photo, like a video).
Sharing a post is something you do when you want all your friends to see something that you found or are proud of, or curious about. For example, let’s say that you see a recipe for chocolate chip cookies that your high school friend posted. You can click share and all your friends and family will then get to see that recipe. Let’s say you’re proud of an accomplishment that you saw of your grandchild, click share and let the world know how proud you are.
You also have the opportunity to post something so that everyone can see it. Share how you’re feeling, or something amazing that happened to you, whatever you’d like. You can post just words, photos, videos, a combination of all three. However you want, you can do it, because it’s your profile.
There’s a symbol at the top of the screen. It looks like a speech bubble with a lightning bolt through it. This is your personal messages. Here you can talk personally with anyone you’d like. No one else can see these messages. You can chat with groups of people, or one-on-one.
As amazing as Facebook can be, there are people out there that prey on seniors and their lack of social media knowledge. Some people will try to get personal information from you. The best way to prevent this is simple: don’t give out any personal information through Facebook. Even if it’s someone you trust. Why? Because if somehow your account got hacked (very rare), the hacker could see your messages and find your personal information. It’s better to be safe than sorry.
Now, as far as privacy goes there’s many levels that Facebook offers. For example, if you don’t want anyone to be able to find you on Facebook, like old friends, you can make that happen. Or, if you only want people to be able to find you if they’re friends of friends, then that’s possible, too. Facebook’s privacy settings are in the settings section of Facebook.
Facebook is a great tool for seniors. It allows them to show the world what they’ve been up to, reconnect with past friends, and stay up-to-date with friends and family. No matter how you use it, Facebook is a great thing for the senior population.
Bonaventure Senior Living
At Bonaventure Senior Living, we have Retirement Perfected, Living Perfected, Dining Perfected, and Fitness Perfected. The best way to see for yourself is to Book-A-Tour today and discover how you can live life on your own terms. We specialize in Independent Living, Assisted Living, and Memory Care, that way, no matter what your current situation is, we have all levels of care covered if your needs ever change.
With Independent Living, we want you to enjoy Simplified Living, allowing you to have the freedom to do what makes you happy. Our Independent Living is designed to accommodate the exceptional senior lifestyle that you’ve earned. What’s even better, is that with Independent Living we offer whatever supportive services that you may need at any time you may need them. Now that’s Retirement Perfected.
Assisted Living at Bonaventure Senior Living is simple: all the lifestyle benefits of our Independent Living, but with any extra support that you may need. Our philosophy is based on three simple things: choice, independence, and dignity. Now that’s Assisted Living at its finest.
Every senior is a unique person, and our Memory Care approach is no different. We tailor our Memory Care by connecting with family members and taking time to understand each person’s specific circumstances. This includes mental, emotional, and physical health. Our Memory Care creates an honorable and professional plan to make sure that each person lives their life to the fullest. That’s the way Memory Care should be.