Facebook Opens Doors For New Faces

Posted on September 27, 2006

Facebook has opened its virtual doors to a much wider web audience. You no longer have to be an active high school or college student (or an alumni with a school email) but you do have to be 18 or over to register under Facebook's "none of the above" broad category. This was an anticipated move. Many had speculated that Facebook would open its doors to the Internet masses in a move to compete with MySpace.com and other social networks. Facebook has blogged about its much broader policy.

You've heard it before, and you'll hear it again; here at Facebook, we want to help people understand their world. We started at one school, and realized over and over again that this site was useful to everyone-not just to Harvard students, not just to college students, not just to students, not just to former students. We've kept growing to accommodate this fact.

This includes your friends who graduated pre-Facebook (yes, there was such a time), your friends who don't have school or work email addresses, and your friends whose schools don't give out email addresses. Now you can all connect.

This doesn't mean that anyone can see your profile, however. Your profile is just as closed off as it ever was. Our network structure is not going away. College and work networks still require an authenticated email address to join. Only people in your networks and confirmed friends can see your profile.

If you already have a Facebook profile that you don't want all the new Facebook users to be able to see you can learn how to restrict the viewage of your profile to specific networks on Facebook's privacy page. Facebook says you can even control who finds and sees you using Facebook's search tool: "You can control who can find you in searches. You can also control what is in your search listing, and whether people who can see your listing can message, poke and add you as a friend."

You need to be logged in to see some of the Facebook profiles. You can see part of founder and CEO Mark Zuckerberg's profile without being registered. However, you have to be logged in to see Facebook's "notorious" resident blogger, Carolyn Abram. Note: Carolyn is selective in choosing her Facebook friends and recently rejected 80 friend requests. She is also the only Facebook Blog blogger who is carrying a large object in her photo.

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