Saturday, February 7, 2015

The Biggest Needlepoint Trend is Facebook UPDATED AGAIN

The biggest change in the needlepoint world I've seen lately has been the use of Facebook.  Over the last year, more and more shops, designers, tool makers and authors are using Facebook to post photos and announcements of new classes, products, designs, exhibits, books, trunk shows or sales, etc.  During the 2014-15 trade shows, almost all the new items were first shown on Facebook.  There were some large and well staffed shops using their blogs to announce items and a few shops also have a section of their websites dedicated to new items from the trade shows, but mostly folks are using Facebook.  It's quick and easy and you can upload photos to your account without hassle, even if you are using a tablet or smart phone instead of a laptop or desktop.

There are groups about needlepoint on Facebook as well.  Before Facebook changed their search engine I found seven groups called "needlepoint" and many more individual pages called needlepoint or with needlepoint in their name.   Now I just find the largest group listed (currently about 7100 members) when I do a search.  (Full disclosure:  That's the group I accidentally started four years ago today when playing around with how groups work.)  But I know there are a lot still there even though FB is making it harder to find them.

So what's a non-Facebook user to do?  I've asked friends without Facebook accounts to look at the FB links I post and many of them are visible to non-FB users.  Not all, but many.  So if you really don't want a FB account you may still be able to see some of the eye candy posted there.

If you want to set up a Facebook account to see items or to join in with the groups available there, you need to know a couple of things.  First--and most importantly--Facebook believes nothing is private.  It is very very difficult to control who sees what you post on Facebook*.  If you set up a FB page and use it and suddenly your family is complaining about all the photos of needlepoint, there's nothing you can do to stop them seeing the stitching.  They can turn off those photos but you cannot.  You have very little control over where the items you post end up.  Think of it as a public bulletin board.  Once you post it, anyone can see.  The only way they can avoid seeing what is on the bulletin board is to not look, i.e., turn off the notifications that you have posted something in their email or FB feed.

*IMPORTANT UPDATEP--Sara Leigh shared this about controlling who sees what--"There is a way to control who sees what you post when you post it. You can Exclude individual friends, e.g., those who complain about certain targeted posts. You can set up a Custom list for certain types of posts. I haven't actually tried to do this because I don't really care whether everyone wants to see my needlepoint, though I've never had a complaint from anyone, and feel that it's their problem. They don't have to look because it's very easy to just scroll on by. You can also customize your Privacy settings to limit what Facebook can do with what you put up there and to control what appears on your Newsfeed to a certain extent. It's not as scary as it's made out to be. I also have AdBlock for my browser, which keeps the ads pretty much off my Newsfeed."  Many thanks, SL!

Of course scam artists and spammers love Facebook.  I would recommend never ever accepting friend requests unless you both know the person and have verified with them that they sent you a friend request.  The newest scam is copying a legit profile and then sending friend requests to all your friends.  Then the spammer --pretending to be you--will start attempting to sell them things.  The normal precautions apply to Facebook. Change your password each month.  It's a pain but it is safer to do this.

Now that I've scared you to death, if you still want to try Facebook, here is their beginner's page.  It is easier now to understand how to set permissions to filter out things you don't want and give yourself some limited privacy than when I first started playing around with Facebook.  It's THE place to be in the world of needlepoint these days, so it is worth trying.
https://www.facebook.com/help/345121355559712/

Just remember that FB acts differently on laptops and desktops than it does on mobile devices like smart phones and tablets.  If you learn how it works on a laptop and are having trouble with a mobile device, try accessing FB via a browser window instead of an app.  That way you'l see things more the way you are used to.

Just be careful, ok?

And Happy Birthday to Needlepoint Nation.

UPDATE: Read Sara Leigh's comment below for more information on how to restrict what your friends see from your Facebook postings.  Thanks, SL!

Written by Jane/Chilly Hollow
Blogging at http://chillyhollownp.blogspot.com
and at http://chstitchguides.blogspot.com
© Copyright February 4, 2015 Jane M. Wood. All rights reserved.

4 comments:

  1. There is a way to control who sees what you post when you post it. You can Exclude individual friends, e.g., those who complain about certain targeted posts. You can set up a Custom list for certain types of posts. I haven't actually tried to do this because I don't really care whether everyone wants to see my needlepoint, though I've never had a complaint from anyone, and feel that it's their problem. They don't have to look because it's very easy to just scroll on by. You can also customize your Privacy settings to limit what Facebook can do with what you put up there and to control what appears on your Newsfeed to a certain extent. It's not as scary as it's made out to be. I also have AdBlock for my browser, which keeps the ads pretty much off my Newsfeed.

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    Replies
    1. Thanks for the tips, Sara Leigh. I had no idea these tools existed but FB is constantly tinkering behind the scenes. They aren't too good about explaining these things, though. I'll modify the article to tell folks to read your comment. Thanks!!!

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  2. Jane, thank you so much for starting Needlepoint Nation! I am daily inspired, amused and educated about needlepoint and Needlepointers on it! You did good work!

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