Facebook is a social networking website.  Since late 2006 anyone over 13 with a valid email address can become a user, but it is aimed more at adults than teenagers.  After joining, you get your own set of pages where you can create a profile with some details about yourself.  You can invite other users as friends, publish news, send messages, write comments and upload your own photos.  Facebook provides a way of keeping up with others.  You can also play some games.


Facebook has had some well-publicised problems with security.  It is well worth looking at the detailed notes in its Help Centre pages on how to protect your identity.  You will find these in the Account drop down menu.  It is very important to keep control of what other people can find out about you. It is important to limit what other people can learn about you.  It is possible to check what outsiders can see of your pages and your profile.  In general Facebook is as secure as emailing or other similar interactive systems on the web.  You should always act on the cautious side.


Once you have joined as an individual user, you will see in the left margin a list of facilities.  One of these is labelled Groups. This is an important feature of Facebook for clubs like the MCS. Details of meets and other events are often posted on the Group's Facebook page.  Members can also discuss and interact in ways not easily replicated on this website. You need permission from the secretary to join the Facebook group, so only other members of the Area will be able to see anything you post there.


As noted above Facebook also provides for applications (Events, Groups, Photos, etc) and games (Farmville, Treasure island etc).  These often allow interaction with other users.  If you do not want to see news from the games others play, go to your own Home page and click on Games in the left margin.  If the item you seek is not there, click on More.  Click on the desired item, go into it and in its leftside margin you should see an option to block it.  

If you have further problems with this issue, the secretary may be able to help.  If you change your mind later, you can unblock a game via a similar procedure.  If you go to your Account button (top right), then into Privacy Settings, then Applications, you can find out what items you have successfully blocked.


Facebook makes regular changes to its system.  Unfortunately this means you need to make regular checks that your privacy settings remain as you wish them to be.  Note that links to Facebook on this website will only work smoothly if your computer or device already knows your details.


If you are not taking part in the MCS N group on Facebook, you are missing a lot of news, gossip and photos.  To join, you need first to be a member both of the MCS and of C&CC. Take care with your settings for friends and privacy.  Then you ask the secretary to send you an invitation to join the MCS N area page and share the fun

(Borrowed from MCS NI)