“Ugh! I never look at them!” – “They are overwhelming.” – “There are too many!”
That’s what people, including possibly you, say about Facebook events. Right?
I know events are crazy. But in some ways, I am not sure how else we can communicate about gatherings and parties to a large amount of people these days – until Facebook implodes, at least. So, here are some tips in terms of creating and then also sorting through all those events to help us all be more responsible Netizens.
1. Don’t create an event for an something that doesn’t have a specific time.
Sometimes I get invites to webinars, and they are borderline douchey, but at least the place I have to be is online at a specific time. Do not, I repeat, do NOT, ever make an event for something that lasts all month. Unless there is a launch party for it – “National Pie Appreciation Month” is not an event.
2. When you create an event, think about what people need to know.
Obviously Facebook leads you through the basics of place, date, time. But what else? BYOB? Are kids welcome? Is the event in a conference room that people have to walk through a building to get to? Trust me, that is intimidating, so the more info, the better.
3. Look through your own event invitations once a week.
When you click “events” in your right navigation, you get lots and lots of suggested events. That is a pain. Up in the top right area, there is a button called “Invites.” Click that to filter out anything you were not specifically invited to. Personally, I think it’s just common courtesy to look at these regularly… unless you A) never invite anyone to anything yourself or B) are anti-social and don’t want to hang out with your friends.
4. RSVP and mean it.
Pull your personal calendar up and look at the dates of your events. Compare. Decline things that conflict or are not interesting to you. Say maybe if you could possibly attend. But here’s the thing. If you say yes, that means YES, people. That means you are going. That means the event coordinator is using your yes to make decisions about food and booze and chairs. That means, unless you are contagious with a viral disease, you GO. That means, you put the event in your calendar right then and there. And if your schedule changes, you also go back and alter your answer on Facebook. If you need to take an overview look at what your calendar looks like, Facebook has a nice month view of everything you have RSVPed to.
5. Share public events your friends may enjoy.
Unless the event is a private party, it is meant to be promoted on Facebook. I believe this is a bit of a win-win for everyone. If there is a crafting event, and your friend Jenny is into crafting, add her to that event. I have gone into the Friends section of Facebook and extended the radius of my hometown (Denver) to include surrounding towns like Boulder and Aurora, because people there are likely to be interested in attending something being held downtown. Then, when I choose friends to invite to a Facebook event and dropdown from “Search by Name” to “Denver, CO area” – I know I am seeing a wide range of people around the Denver metro area. And I pick people I think might like whatever event is going on.
Now. I understand that I may actually be annoying people by inviting them to events. I partly think this is because many don’t think about who they are inviting to what and we all get inundated with stuff we don’t care about. But I really do think about it. Like, “Person X doesn’t drink alcohol so I won’t invite them to this whiskey tasting.” But my whiskey connoisseur friend had a blast.
I truly believe that if we all thought about it more, and put more care into Facebook events, it would be a great tool for all of us to find great things to do together.