Have you seen the Facebook Timeline yet? Some people have already started using the Timeline, but soon everyone will be using the Timeline. It will replace your current Facebook Wall and Profile page. The Timeline will not affect your News Feed, only your personal page. Don’t want the Facebook Timeline? Too bad, so sad, you don’t have a choice.
Once you activate your Facebook Timeline, you have 7 days to setup your timeline before anyone else can see it. Use this time to pick out what you want to appear in your timeline. Its your timeline, so you choose what shows up and what doesn’t.
To get the Timeline, click here and click on the Get Timeline button at the bottom of the page. If you regularly post updates and pictures to Facebook, be prepared to be overwhelmed with your Facebook history. You will have the option of removing specific updates from your timeline if you want.
Check Your Privacy Settings
When I activated my timeline, I noticed that Facebook changed my privacy settings to make my information public despite the fact I had previously set everything to private. If you do nothing else to your Timeline, at least restrict all the posts on your Timeline to Friends only by going to your Privacy Settings – How You Connect. Change the second to last setting, Limit the Audience for Past Posts, to restrict your Timeline to Friends only. This is the fastest and easiest way to make sure your Timeline stays private to friends only. If you care to, you can go through and edit individual posts at a later date.
In your Privacy Settings, check out How Tags Work to further customize your Timeline settings. I have Timeline Review and Tag Review set to On which means I must approve posts I’ve been tagged in before they appear on my Timeline. My Maximum Timeline Visibility is set to Friends, Tag Suggestions is set to Friends, and Friends Can Check Me Into Places is set to No to give me the most control over what my friends can post about me on Facebook.
Editing Your Timeline
You can edit what shows up by using the star and pencil icon in the upper right corner of the post (they will appear when you hover on the post). Use the star/resize button to make posts larger or smaller. If a post highlights an important time in your life, you can make the post as large as possible to call attention to it. Use the pencil icon to hide posts from your Timeline (like the old softball picture from when I was 12, no one needs to see how awkward I looked then) or to change the main photo of an album.
Add A Cover Photo
On a normal Facebook page you get one profile picture, on a Facebook timeline you get a Facebook profile picture and a cover picture. The profile picture will show up in the News feed when you post to your Wall or post a comment. Your cover photo is the large photo that will appear at the top of your timeline. Pick pictures that represent you and are appropriate. If you are just graduating college and trying to get a job, a picture of you drinking alcohol or in any other appropriate position is not the right cover or profile picture for you.
One Last Check Before You Publish
Before you publish your Timeline, make sure you go to Settings – View As to see how your Timeline appears to other people. The default view will show you how your Timeline appears to a non-Facebook friend. If you do not want to make your profile available to the public, you need to use this option to check that your information is secure. In this day and age, you are judged by your Facebook presence so make sure you are presenting the right image.
The Facebook Timeline is coming, whether we like it or not. Take the time to review your Timeline and make adjustments when necessary. If you want to learn more about the Facebook Timeline, I suggest you check out the resources below.