Type of Resource


Publication Date

June 22, 2023


Social Media and Apps 

Facebook is one of the world’s largest social media platforms. The platform is a social media giant, with over 2.93 billion active monthly users.

Facebook allows individuals to create profiles, upload photos and videos, connect with family and friends, and share content from elsewhere on the web.

Did you know?

Over 60 million emojis are sent every day on Facebook! 😀 👍 😍

How Users Connect

Users are linked to other users and Facebook pages as a Fan, Follower, or a Friend. Users can like a page, normally a business or public figure, and become a Fan, to receive updates in their News Feed.

Users can choose to follow an individual, normally somebody famous, and receive updates from them. When a user knows another user, they will add them as a Friend. Once this Friend Request is accepted, these two users can communicate with one another and will be able to view each other’s posts on the platform.

Facebook Reaction Preferences

Facebook users can choose to hide the number of reactions and/or views their posts get, as well as the amount on other users’ posts. This feature was introduced in June 2021 to combat the pressure many social media users feel to get more likes, reactions, or shares on their posts.

When users choose to enable this feature, they will see the range of reactions used instead of the number. For example: a post might show a heart emoji, a smiley face emoji, and a thumbs up emoji, but it will not show the specific count of any of these reactions. Reaction counts will still appear on posts which are related to marketing.

Age Restrictions

Facebook rules (Terms and Conditions of Service) require users to be 13 or older to use the app, but it is possible to enter a fake date of birth to bypass the age requirement.

To try and increase safety settings for users under 16 (or 18 in some countries), they will now sign up with more private accounts by default, or be recommended to switch their account privacy if they are existing users.

Core Functions

Facebook’s ‘Home’ page is the primary way users see content. When a friend adds a new photo or a celebrity shares a post, it will appear here. Users can scroll through seemingly endless photos, text, and videos. If they ever see something they don’t want to see, users can click on the three little dots in the top right hand of the post to unfollow, report, or more.
Shortform videos that are shared separately from the main home feed. By clicking on the large plus button, where it says ‘Add to my story’ users can share photos and short videos with friends. Like Instagram, these posts will only last 24 hours. This feature gives users lots of filters to get creative with.
Users can message friends, businesses, and other pages. Remember that users can receive messages from people who are not their friend, which Meta calls ‘Message Requests’. To view message requests, tap the profile picture in the messenger app and select message requests.
This is the platform’s very own video on-demand service. Users can upload a short or long video, but the feature also has original drama, comedy, and news. Users can check out Facebook Watch by tapping on the current tab on the left-hand side of their screen. Users can watch their favourite videos on Facebook watch with friends by hosting a Watch Party.
Marketplace allows users to post items for sale as well as snap up bargains in their local area. Users can check out Facebook Marketplace by tapping the relevant tab on the left-hand side of the screen. When using Facebook Marketplace, users should remember that they are interacting with people they do not know. Exercising caution by checking the buyer’s profile and always arranging to meet in a public space are the best safety practices for sellers.
This livestream service was launched in 2016. Any person, public figure or page can ‘go live’ and broadcast directly from their device to those watching via Facebook. The videos can show up in the newsfeed of their friends and followers – depending on the broadcaster’s privacy settings.


Safety Settings

Top Tips

Remember, users can deactivate their accounts at any time. To deactivate an account, go to your Settings and select Security and Login. At the bottom, select Deactivate.
If a user decides to permanently delete their account instead of deactiving it, they won’t be able to access their account again.

Adjust your safety settings, report, and block

How to set your privacy on Facebook

If someone is pretending to be you or someone that you know, you can report them directly to Facebook.

Welcome to the Online Safety Hub

How old are you?

If you are under 18, click the blue button below to visit the Online Safety Hub micro-site for children and young people.