Facebook is an online social networking site that enables registered users to connect with each other through status updates, chat messages, group interactions and to share their photos and videos with other registered users. The site is run and privately owned by Facebook Inc. The name Facebook was coined from a slang that was used to refer to a book containing photographs and basic information of students that some American Universities give to new students in a bid to help them be familiar with each other.
Facebook was founded in February 2004 by Mark Zuckerberg and was named ‘The Facebook.’ Within 24 hours of its launch, approximately 1,200 Harvard students had signed up to the site and over half of the Harvard University undergraduate students had also registered within one month. Facebook was initially limited to Harvard University students and was later expanded to other Boston universities, the Ivy League and ultimately to all Universities in the US.
The site was named Facebook.com in August 2005 upon being purchased for about $200,000. From September 2005, Facebook was availed to high schools in the US and then gradually began to spread worldwide. The site is presently open to anyone with a valid email address and above 13 years of age. Currently, Facebook is curently the most popular social networking site with 1.11 billion active users as of March 2013.
Before using Facebook, you must sign up for the site by creating a personal profile containing your basic information after which you add other users as friends to enable you to catch up, exchange messages and share your thoughts and experiences via status updates and uploaded photos and videos.
You will receive instant notifications from Facebook when your friends update their profiles or share photos and videos which will appear on your homepage. Similarly, you can join user groups with which you have shared interests in addition to creating your own Facebook group or fan page and inviting your friends to join.