The art of the poke: A Facebook guide for the uninitiated

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Everyone’s heard of Facebook, but there still may be some of you out there that have so far refused to jump on the social media bandwagon. If you are finally breaking down and joining the rest of us, welcome, and we’re here to help you make the transition. Joining Facebook is free, simple, and worthwhile — after all, it’s a great way to keep in touch with friends and family, meet new people, and express yourself. Our Facebook guide is by no means complete, but the following are some of the basics for the novice social networker. Just remember to keep those privacy settings in check.

Signing up

First, you’ll need to go to the official Facebook website and sign up. The site will ask you for your first and last name, and either your mobile number or email address (either will do). You’ll also need to enter your birthday and gender, which will help assist others in finding you on the site. Make sure you also choose a password that’s easy to remember, and, moreover, strong enough to keep others guessing.

A word on using your real name, though. While Facebook has relaxed its requirement on using something other than your real name in some case, in general, the site will force you to use your real name in your profile. Those who don’t run the risk of having their accounts locked until they prove their identity. It’s a process, to be sure, so we suggest you use your real name from the get-go.

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