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Usability and User Interface Design of Facebook

Facebook is an online platform or what we called social networking site that allows users to create
his/her public profile and interact or communicate with other users on the website. Social networking
sites usually have a user that will decide to input a list of people with whom they share a connection and
then allow the people who’s in the list to confirm or reject the connection. After the two connections
were established, the user can now search the networks of connections to make more friends or
connections. A social networking site is also known as a social networking website or social website.

Techopedia(2017) explains that Social Networking Site (SNS) have different rules for establishing
connections, but they often allow users to view the connections of a confirmed connection and even
suggest further connections based on a person’s established network. Some social networking websites
like LinkedIn are used for establishing professional connections, while sites like Facebook straddle the
line between private and professional. There are also many networks that are built for a specific user
base, such as cultural or political groups within a given area or even traders in financial markets.
Techopedia(2017) also added that Social networking websites are easy to confuse with social media
sites. A social networking site is any site that has a public or semi-public profile page, including dating
sites, fan sites and so on. A social media site has profiles and connections, combined with the tools to
easily share online content of all types.

Social networking sites especially facebook gained a huge popularity over the past few years. Their
modes of communication have evolved tremendously. In fact, they have a huge impact to the
globalization by contributing and making the communication stronger and effective. Facebook is not
only a site it is a platform and online service that prominence on enabling the building of social
associations or social networks amongst people who have the same activities, likes or interest, real-life
acquaintances, or circumstances. Facebook is a very popular platform that serves multiple purposes like
sharing of ideas, news updates across the entire globe, events, personal or individual networks and
activities.

In the past, social networking was an entirely different concept that contained category places, means
to connect with friends and a reference system related to trust. But this system has evolved
tremendously. It now includes American-based services such as Facebook, Google+, and Twitter that are
being widely used across the globe (Salzinger, Antrobus, & Hammer , 1988).
Facebook is a social marketing that builds relationship. It gives users an opportunity and chance to reach
people who are not in reach physically due to many reasons. Now a day the global market of ideas and
products are focus in connectivity that’s why many people embrace it. According to Robinson &
Stubberud(2010) Web-based social networking services give its users a huge platform and an
opportunity to have access to people who have mutual interests and activities across political,
economic, and geographic borders. Numerous websites are launching to tap into the power of the social
networking ideal for humanity.

Because of those setups many opportunities that can link disjointed activities and help organizations to
influence their audience. Social networks are giving people many ideas to connect easily. They give
many benefits to the people’s lives. They give chance to the people to have or make new friends and
build relationships where it happens 24/7. The procedure of social marketing is to endorse a business or
website via social media channels like facebook. Social marketing is a huge platform that promotes
strategy especially this year. The number one special features of the social forums are its lower cost. It
gives many people even though you’re just an ordinary person a huge market to make more
connections. It brings a good and outstanding search engine ranking and also provides quality. The
responsiveness of the contacts of the users will increase and decrease cause by the value of content one
offers. The content you must have in your forum is it is new, informative, remarkable, exciting and many
more that can attract your contacts. Marketing channels needs to highlight their marketing occurrence
with a best superiority and worth of their own product.

Facebook and other social networking tools is progressively the piece of scholarly research. Scholars in
numerous arenas have initiated to explore and examine the influence of social-networking sites,
discovering how such sites may play any role into subjects of individuality, confidentiality, social capital,
youth ethos and culture, and education (de la Paz, 2009).

Among the different cultural development that describe the era of the internet, some have had the
influence of the social website especially facebook. The forum of the facebook made the word ‘friend’ a
transitive verb, and ‘like’, ‘post’, ‘poke’, ‘share’ and many more have gained their own meanings that
gives a new style of communication and relational association. It has many moral and professional
challenges. Facebook is being used by many people as personal where they share their own lives while
other used it as professional level where it connects it to their work. It all depends to the individual to
how they will separate their personal and professional identity. Facebook is a forum that makes all
information that was given by the user is accessible to the web. It needs a responsible decision and the
profile needs to be put according to many benefits that one person might face. The maximization of the
benefits helps while avoiding shame and liability. To have a secure profile, before the user creates
his/her profile one should: recognize the boundary violations, the user must know how to start his/her
security and privacy setting and the user must always remember that the user embody his/her
individuality as well as his/her profession.

According to O'Brien & Torres (2012) the Internet allows everyone to speedily check out people in
fraction of seconds and study private info but the info on a person's Facebook page typically is
considerably more private than what Internet searches show and are considered way less dignified.

The privacy settings of the facebook is the another important aspect that needs to be consider. Because
it has a power or numerous tools that can help the user to change their profiles from public view into a
private but comprehending and implementing it was not easy. Professionalism in the world of
cyberspace is an absolutely necessary issue that needs to be considered while making a personal
facebook account.

Under some situations, professional advice given in unintentional, outside-the-office settings can
develop a relationship with all its supplementary responsibilities and accountability possibilities. This is
common in Facebook communication as well. For instance, a professional advice given unintentionally
through Facebook can be relied upon and if it incurs any harm to the individual who relied upon it a
negligence lawsuit could result (Mossman & Farrell, 2012). Although facebook has a listed of thousands
or millions of advantages but its usability tools need to be comprehended and understood in order to
avoid the numerous circumstances. The society worry is that social media were made by neither to
make the work of creation of the unaffected information or to make the researching easy. According to
Hardy(2016) people make them work for themselves but they will merely aid our requirements
incorrectly till we get extra convoluted in designing systems that suit to our work. Social media are
intended and designed to convey consumers to the businesses that pursue their practice. A 2010 cyber
Report on "Social Media and Research Workflow" lists fourteen important answers that deliver a
beneficial picture of the present state of affairs (Brydon, 2010). It says that it really depends on the
professionalism of how that individual uses the valuable tool that is easily at the disposal of every
people.
The usability evaluation methods of this much influential and popular social network is one of the
serious aspect that is concern by the most user. Usability testing is a method used in user-centred
communication proposal to assess a product by testing it on users. This is a useful measure that gives
direct input on how real users use the system (Sing & Der-Thanq, 2004). The method that can be used to
evaluate the usability of Facebook is Hallway testing. It refers to the usability method in which people
are randomly questioned about the usability of a product or service (Meister & Enderwick , 2002). In the
case of Facebook, it will show the different kind, types or class of people. The most demand and needs
of most user of a social network is that the pleasantness of the appearance, simple but neat and leave a
good impression. Readability formulas work by measuring certain features of a text based on
mathematical calculations. We base these readability measures on a handful of factors, like the number
of words in a sentence, as well as the number of letters or syllables per word (Scott, 2017). Not only its
emphasis but also the focus on the content of the user is the purpose of that kind of system that
included readability formulae. Bennett(2012) said that It is a well-known fact that user wants either to
have access to the data or resolve several of his jobs rapidly, appropriately by being negligibly confused
and diverted by other things. Thus, the part of the interface is to speedily and appropriately monitor the
user there, where he will be able to do what he wants. Of course, the interface should have a pleasing
look and leave a good imprint. Though, its beauty cannot be to the disadvantage of plainness, speed,
and info capability. The user interface should be intensive and active on movement. The point is that the
look and the structure of the interface should not let the user get bored. It should inspire the users to
continuously use the system to inspire them to move forward. It should be tempting enough to inspire
the user to find more features and additional information (Long & Christensen, 2011). There are things
that are missing in the user interface features of the content of the facebook. There are problems that
make the facebook difficult to comprehend and make the readability complicated. One of the problems
of the facebook user interface feature is the frequent change of the home page appearance and the
profile page which makes other users to have a difficulty to adapt. Not only the frequent change but also
the content of it is not in focused. This means that the page of facebook has many advertisements that
make it more difficult and complicated for the users. The things that make the profile less focused on
individuals purpose of joining facebook is the suggestion to likes the pages and information. This things
makes the user interface feature of facebook difficult to comprehend and difficult to read.
Facebook is one of the social media networks used by many researchers around the world to give
information and share their research information. It also collects news and shares it to the people where
it becomes a center for research publications and collaborative research. Social media like facebook are
of great advantage to satisfy the need for instantaneous and inexpensive communication between
researchers aided by the development of interdisciplinary and cooperative research. Because of it this is
the era where the advances of communications are happening, making every individual in the world to
be part of a worldwide research community. These new tools make study and research sharing way to
easier and a more usual part of one's daily life (Brydon, Social Media's Research Potential , 2010). We
can say now that one of the unavoidable parts of our lives is using of social media network the facebook.
We can’t deny that facebook has a numerous benefits to us. It greatly enhanced the concept of
globalization.

The foremost advantage of having such a social network in our universal setup is that it lets users to
practice connections and search for new and old friends. It becomes informal to join groups of people
with like interests (Diani & Mcadam, 2003). Facebook is a supermarket for communicating blogs, mass
media, calendars, communication, and sharing philosophies or info. This social network has uncountable
benefits such as letting and fueling the flow of ideas, values and opinions of every individual to be
effortlessly spoken to the rest of the world, which demonstrates how comparable people are taking
benefit of their liberties. These aptitudes to work and build networks together in a single place are being
exposed by program designers (Lukito & Chan, 2010). If there an advantages there can be a
disadvantages as well. The flow of different information maybe it is important or not the flow is too
unplanned that can result many problems. Not only trouble but it can result disadvantages like
weakening of relationships especially long distance relationship, adding of procrastination and can lead
to stalking and spread addiction and dependence. All of these problems are noticeable in society yet the
complications of the world are barely spoken. Many countries around the world has an accessed to
facebook which result the advancement of interconnections between the different parts of the world.

Now a day the international communication is excessive. But because Facebook is intricately involved
with multinational businesses, its moneymaking advertising endorses a definite kind of entrepreneurial
culture, in which typical commodities are endorsed by global marketing operations that exploit simple
material needs, which in turn generate alike and non-diverse lives. In short, it’s a forum that gives every
nation an opportunity to endorse their culture and impose one’s culture upon other cultures. It appears
communication is lastly being valued and applied into our daily lives, as this social network is helping in
optimistic global expansion, or constructing and upholding a global society (McAnany, 2012).

Individual culture on facebook user interface design has many different perspectives. Facebook interface
user design has many pros and cons that can be pointed out. The insecurity about the privacy settings is
one of the highlighted major factors by the users. The conducted interview shows that the majority of
the users are afraid to share their personal information because of the fear of hackers. The privacy
issues gained from the interview are: the users don’t trust facebook by not uploading anything because
the users are not sure that what the facebook will do with their personal photos. Because when the
users search their name on google they saw their photos there. But those photos are uploaded in
facebook only. Other users don’t want to upload anything because they don’t want that other people
will know their personal details. Some users are afraid about the hackers that can steal or take their
personal details, photos and whatever the hacker want to take. Users also pointed other major issues
like the complications of the new settings, the application are not for other language like Arabic because
the Arabic version is not right fitted to the design causing complications when use a Arabic, the pictures
are not that good because of the brightness causing the pictures distorted and the colors are too bright
for the users, most of the users bothers by the advertisement, they want a simple profiles and
homepage.

There are observations made through interviews. One of the most influential factors that have impact to
the likings and usage in the context of the facebook is the age factor. The millennia’s people are the one
that can adapt the changes settings of the facebook easily than the baby boomers. The availability
ample time is one of the reasons for the younger people than the older people. Because learning a new
setting is a time consuming task for the elder that’s why they find it a burden. The privacy is another
important factor that is influenced by the age group. The elders are the one who are concerned and
bothered about the privacy settings of the facebook compared to the younger ones. And the purpose of
the facebook for the older age group is to keep them in touch to their friends, they explore less
compared to younger group and they want that the context is simple and easy to understand. Older
groups don’t want a numerous advertisement because it bothers them.

There are few recommendations that can be made to improve the users of the facebook and help to
increase its support for all age groups. Recommendations like when one hover the picture the picture
will pop up, the homepage and the timeline should be simple, the versions for the other language
should fit to the design, facebook should customizable. It will help the users to customize what kind of
interface they want to have which help ever user to satisfy their needs and demands. The facebook
should maintained the privacy information shared by the users and the one feature of the facebook that
should not be change all of a sudden is the privacy settings which sometimes lead to the publication of
the personal information where it gives access to any user.

My conclusion about the facebook’s usability and user interface design is it is not all that. Facebook has
good and bad sides. All the above-mentioned are the little proof that facebook is not only helpful for us
but it can also be harmful to us. I can say that we should use the social media network like facebook as a
tool, although we know that many people around the world used it. We also know that social networks
help us to our long distance communication but we must stop at some time. We cannot use it as our
main tool for our communication and interaction. Like I said before that facebook has a positive effects
but it also has a negative effects. If we continue over using this kind of tool it will keep affecting our
humanity, friendship, bullying, self-expression and communication in a negative ways. For me there’s
nothing that can change the true personal interaction.