One suggestion I would like to offer adults on this Cybersmile chat forum is that if you like the interaction you get on Facebook and don't want to let it go, consider segueing over to LinkedIn.
If you're unfamiliar with LinkedIn, it's like Facebook, except it's a network to connect with professionals in your industry or business. Sometimes, I also have connections to people who I have known a long time but are not in my industry, just to stay in touch.
Here are some great aspects of LinkedIn to consider. (and no, they did not pay me to write this. I just thought it would be helpful to write up why it's been wonderful for me!)
1. You can follow successful people and hear their insights on how to develop yourself, no matter what your job is. One of my favorite people to follow is Richard Branson. He writes inspirational blog entries and posts uplifting thoughts. Plus, we all know how successful he is and that he knows what he's talking about!
2. You will not find any cyberbullying on LinkedIn. At least, I have NOT. Everyone who is connected there is trying to advance their career or make business contacts. Hence, everyone has a photograph, their list of what they've done, their list of their connections, i.e., they are verifiable. They are putting on their best faces. They are not there to do anything except get their name out there for recruiters or job hunters to consider them.
3. LinkedIn allows you to post blog entries, and everyone will offer amazing and complimentary comments! You will find NO trolling here. Everyone is on there to support each other professionally. You may find someone with a question about what you've posted, but if they disagree, they will usually send you a private message.
4. LinkedIn ha really good controls so that you can build your network without worrying about trolls infiltrating it. You have to approve everyone who requests that they be included in your network. I only approve those with whom I have done business, former colleagues or people who are well known to me professionally. To include someone means that you are essentially "vouching" for their business sense or their integrity. I do not approve anyone that I have never met. And if someone on Twitter asks to be included in my network, I almost always turn down the request, explaining that I only connect with those who have done business with me one-on-one.
5. You can pay extra to be able to heighten your job search or connect with people that you hope will make introductions for you. Because people actually pay MONEY for this service, they are not going to do it for trolling purposes. They will pay to connect with you because they simply want to interact in a business manner.
These are just some of the reasons I love LinkedIn. I have been using it more and more since I left Facebook, and I have been able to increase my interactions with really wonderful people. It makes me feel good about myself, too, because everyone is so positive there! (sort of like Cybersmile! :-)
Let me know if you have any questions or suggestions, adults.
And kids/ teenagers, although it's too soon for you to think about joining LinkedIn, there are tools for you to eventually connect when you become a college student. You can use this to connect with university professors and with professionals in your dream job. I occasionally will accept a connection request from a student from my alma mater, if it means that they are seeking career advice in my field.
Hope this helps and that everyone has a great week!