Since it’s inception, Facebook has been all about groups, cliques, clubs etc. When it first started it was primarily focused on college kids. You had to use your university email address when you signed up and you were automatically grouped by your college.
Next, Facebook opened up to high school kids and you were grouped by what high school you were going to. When Facebook eventually opened up to anyone over 13 people were still big on grouping themselves with something, usually their work. Once you signed up and validated your work email address you grouped with all your fellow co-workers.
As Facebook started to grow and become more mainstream we saw a natural evolution starting to take place. Facebook was so good at connecting groups of people that had something in common and allowing them to share information, photos, videos, etc with just those people, it sort of organically became the natural place for families to start connecting.
Families are the ultimate group. Suddenly, your aunts and uncles, cousins and parents, people whom with you might have updated your life separately throughout the year at different times, now they had immediate access to your daily life, you to theirs.
Facebook unintentionally became the thing that we had been looking for all along. Since the birth of the internet people realized its ability to bring people closer together. Facebook stumbled into place with just the right tools, at just the right time to become the de facto online scrapbook for families to keep in touch.
Once Facebook caught on they started making it as easy as possible to connect with your families, even creating Create a Family Group pages.
With 500 million users there are bound to be a couple million critics but say what you will Facebook has just enough features, and is easy enough to use to keep people of all ages coming back.
I live in New York with my wife and my 2-year-old daughter. I’m the only one in my family that lives here. My family is spread out in Colorado, Indiana and Michigan. I know that for me it’s been a wonderful thing that anyone in my family can log onto Facebook and share in the memories we are making with our family. My mothers and sisters can watch videos and see photos any time that is convenient for them.
It’s clear that it didn’t start out to be a family platform, but just like many unplanned families, Facebook started with a college kid and a few too many drinks. Accidents aren’t always a bad thing.