16 Jul 2013
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How I teach my Mother... Facebook

By Shannon Williams

My mother joined Facebook about a year ago. She’s not actually that bad at it.

Well, she doesn’t share much but she likes going on there to keep in touch with her family and some friends, and also to make annoying comments on anything that I post.

But then she found a pool game. She loves playing pool; online and in real life. From what I can tell, this pool game must be amazing because she’s constantly playing it. Maybe check it out, if that’s your thing.

Every night she plays this game for hours and hours, and whenever our Internet cuts out (which is often, thanks Vodafone) she has a near heart attack because she loses all her “money”.

It has gotten so bad that she doesn’t talk to anyone in the house. She won’t get up and answer the phone because you can’t pause the game. Her dinner will sit there, going cold, because she has to finish the game. She won’t let the dogs out if their pootime conflicts with pooltime.

It’s actually the most important thing in her life. I’m an online gaming orphan.

Now that she has a game addiction, she’s prone to all those pop up ads and all those recommendations of games Facebook thinks she will like. Unknowingly, my mum has somehow liked all these games pages, and, as we know, that means a whole bunch of crap clogging your newsfeed.

Mum didn’t understand what liking these pages meant. She couldn’t understand why these random pages of games she has never even played are posting things on her wall. “How do they have access to my wall!” she’d freak.

Her annoyance at these status updates by these pages turned into a big fear that someone had hacked into her Facebook and someone in Nigeria was spamming her newsfeed.

Before things got out of control, I explained to her that she must have liked the pages without realising. “But I don’t like farm games”. Sigh. Cue explanation (again) of Facebook lingo.

I confirmed my theory and showed mum how she has “liked” the games, and how easy it was to unlike them. Nigerian takeover averted. Phew.

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