[HOW TO] Getting the Elderly Up To Speed On The Internet: Making Friends (part 2)

In the first part of this series, we created a computer environment that requires little to no intervention by the users to get them from powering on their laptops to accessing their profile on Facebook. Using this setup, my mother had more focus on what she needed to learn and deal with, sometimes we forgot how much is required in order for us to navigate a website such as Facebook. Unless we break down the website into its smaller and simpler elements, the first time computer users will be presented with a very high learning curve and might be inclined to give up in frustration over how much they need to grasp before they are able to do anything with a computer.

So to deal with Facebook I broke it down in order of importance for my mom:

  • Sending and accepting friend requests
  • Viewing photos
  • Checking and replying to messages
  • Using the Facebook Chat

Friend Requests

Facebook Navigation

A Facebook without friends is like an empty canvas; there is only so much you can do with a Facebook with ‘zero’ friends. So the first thing we tackled is adding some people to my mother’s Facebook. We kept it limited to close family and friends so that my mother doesn’t have to worry about what she shares, and also I went ahead and changed the privacy settings for her Facebook explaining to her that only the people who she adds and accepts as friends will be able to see what she does on Facebook.

[HOW TO] Getting the Elderly Up To Speed On The Internet: The Prerequisites

It is certainly not an understatement that the internet has revolutionized communication for my generation, but at the same time, there are plenty of people that missed this revolution’s train and now they are feeling more and more isolated since everyone has completely migrated to the internet.

My mother is one of those people; she has been holding back on learning how to use a computer or browse the internet for the past 20 years, but now that everyone is just sending their photos through email and Facebook rather than through a post, and they send each other messages through the internet rather than through voicemail, she has been getting more and more interested. Therefore, I decided that it is time to bring her up to speed on the net. So in these posts, and hopefully some follow ups, I will be introducing her to the various parts of the net and I’ll be sharing with you various parts of what we have learned together. The aim is to create a method for teaching those computer holdouts how to use computers and the net and making the internet interesting, enticing and relevant for them using social media.

The internet is vast in what it offers and while a students starting point for learning to use the internet might be Google, for my mom, her interests lies mostly in Facebook. Facebook allowed me to only teach her using one platform what was split up into 5 or more platforms just 3 years ago, it combines chatting, messaging, profile updates, address book, pictures and videos on a single platform. So I decided that this will be our starting point.

Prerequisites

Gmail and Facebook are enough!

An email is still a requirement for setting up your online presence. So, after finally finding a suitable Gmail account name that doesn’t involve numbers – so that it is easy to remember – I went on to setup the account, and saved the username and password in the browser. Upon logging into the email account, I checked the “stayed signed in” so that my mother won’t have to deal with usernames and passwords, and I also added a bookmark that is visible at the top of the browser.

10 Top Funniest Facebook Status Updates This Week!

Every day, I come across a few hilarious status Facebook updates. Some of them are so funny, that I actually feel stupid laughing all by myself!

Therefore, I invite you to invite you to enjoy our third list of the 10 top funniest Facebook status updates.

Warning: Your Naked Photos, Too, Might Be Posted on Facebook!

Brokenhearted, drunk and fueled with jealousy after his girlfriend suddenly pulled the plug on their relationship, Joshua posted his ex-girlfriend’s pictures on Facebook, for millions of Facebook users to see and was made legal history for being put in jail for doing so!

10 Top Funniest Facebook Status Updates This Week!

10 Top Funniest Facebook Status Updates This Week!

Every day, I come across a few hilarious status Facebook updates. Some of them are so funny, that I actually feel stupid laughing all by myself! Enjoy my second link :)

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The Social Network: Major Errors

The Social Network: Major Errors

How True is True

The Social Network has been recieved extremely well by critics across the boar, earning a 97% from Rotten Tomato and being compared to classics such as 'Citizen Kane' and 'Rashomon' . The movie is superbly directed and script is impeccably written, and hell even Justin Timberlake gave a solid performance in his role of Napster creator...

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10 Top Funniest Facebook Status Updates this Week!

10 Top Funniest Facebook Status Updates this Week!

Every day, I come across a few hilarious status Facebook updates. Some of them are so funny, that I actually feel stupid laughing all by myself! So, here's a list of my 10 top funniest Facebook status updates so you can share my laughs :)

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Quirky News of the Web — October 2010

Quirky News of the Web — October 2010

A Tour Of the City

Previous quirky news posts: January - February - March - April - May- June - July - August - September - October There are always smaller headlines that tend to go unnoticed. They are the headlines that let us know how individualistic and unique some of the interactions on the web can be, and how much social media is shaping our...

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Quirky News of the Web — September 2010

Quirky News of the Web — September 2010

Say Hello To My Lil' Friend

Previous quirky news posts: January - February - March - April - May- June - July - August - September There are always smaller headlines that tend to go unnoticed. They are the headlines that let us know how individualistic and unique some of the interactions on the web can be, and how much social media is shaping our world in...

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WTF: Are You Next on Facebook’s Hit List?

WTF: Are You Next on Facebook’s Hit List?

Three teens who were on a hit list posted on Facebook have been killed in the past 10 days in a southwestern Colombian town, officials say. Police say they do not know who posted the list or why the names are on it.

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