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Best thing since Time Magazine named you Person of the Year
February 4, 2014 7:22 AM   Subscribe

Happy birthday Facebook! To celebrate ten years, Facebook has created a special "A Look Back" movie for each user with some highlights of the user's timeline. (Requires Facebook account.)
posted by grouse (178 comments total) 13 users marked this as a favorite

 
I totally thought: this isn't true, they can't have personalized a mini-movie about my history on Facebook.

But they did. And now I am creeped out but heartened by my New Year's decision to stop feeding the damn thing.
posted by Kitteh at 7:26 AM on February 4 [7 favorites]


That was surprisingly less annoying than I would have expected. Though the 'some photos you have shared' bit seemed really, really random. I wonder how they picked those? My guess is maybe most commented on, because it seemed like the ones they picked are ones I remember having a fair bit of discussion, but it generally wasn't because they were good or even interesting photos, so it was a very odd group.
posted by jacquilynne at 7:27 AM on February 4 [4 favorites]


Is it too late to let it die of exposure on a hill?
posted by The Whelk at 7:29 AM on February 4 [11 favorites]


I had the opposite reaction, I wish I'd given them more meaningful data. All I got from the early years were a few random pictures of strangers that I can't remember.
posted by blue_beetle at 7:29 AM on February 4 [4 favorites]


All I got from the early years were a few random pictures of strangers that I can't remember.

I am SO stealing that line for a song.
posted by flapjax at midnite at 7:31 AM on February 4 [62 favorites]


That was actually pretty well done and sweet. It's interesting how these little day-to-day things become major time-stamps along the way.
posted by jbickers at 7:31 AM on February 4 [4 favorites]


Is it too late to let it die of exposure on a hill?

I'm afraid so. At this age the best we can do is send it off to boarding school.
posted by octobersurprise at 7:32 AM on February 4 [3 favorites]


Movie? Mine was six completely random pictures on a page. Am I missing something?
posted by kyrademon at 7:33 AM on February 4 [3 favorites]


Aw, the "photos you've shared" one pulled up a photo of the day my wife and I met, shared back when it was still a photo of a person I met and then didn't see again for several years.
posted by griphus at 7:34 AM on February 4 [19 favorites]


Am I missing something?

I'll ask Zuckie about it over lunch tomorrow.
posted by flapjax at midnite at 7:34 AM on February 4 [3 favorites]


Awww, that was nice.
posted by ThePinkSuperhero at 7:35 AM on February 4 [1 favorite]


Mine turned out good; thanks to my good internet hygiene, I was not embarassed at all.
posted by Renoroc at 7:35 AM on February 4 [2 favorites]


Mine was homebrew, homebrew, homebrew, job offer, daughter, daughter, daughter, daughter, SWAT bus, daughter, which is a pretty accurate summary of my life since 2007. Sweet, but I imagine it's more accurate if your Facebook usage is not typical.
posted by Elementary Penguin at 7:36 AM on February 4


I joined Facebook in 2006. The year before I met my husband, four years before I would become a runner, which would lead to being a multi-marathoner.

I seriously almost cried.
posted by roomthreeseventeen at 7:37 AM on February 4 [19 favorites]


The sincere, feel good music was hilarious when combined with all the ridiculous photos I've posted.
posted by orme at 7:38 AM on February 4 [10 favorites]


That was very nice.
posted by Night_owl at 7:39 AM on February 4 [1 favorite]


Hahaha, this is pretty damn fantastic if you're someone who doesn't take Facebook seriously at all:

"WHY AM I THE ONLY PERSON IN THE THEATRE FOR GHOST RIDER??!?!!!?! I'm taking my pants off."
February 2012

"Just watched POSSESSION for the first time. I think it ruined my fucking life."
October 2013

"Oh fuck you, Facebook, what if my name really was Macho Fuckstick?"
January 2014

And then a photo of me drinking beer at work. THANKS FOR THE MEMORIES.
posted by Timmoy Daen at 7:40 AM on February 4 [52 favorites]


That was much better than expected. Mine was like a romantic comedy with added cats. I almost got weepy.
posted by Orb at 7:41 AM on February 4


Mine was quite nice, as well. I expecting painful reminders of my recent divorce (and there were some of those), but instead was reminded of some pretty cool moments.
posted by MrMoonPie at 7:42 AM on February 4


I joined facebook in June 2004, but my "early days" doesn't start until 2009, which I attribute to my not owning a camera before then.

It would appear that my facebook activity breaks down into three main categories: pictures of cake, pictures of my hair, pictures of my dog.

Most liked status is about a sandwich.

I'm living a good life, I think.
posted by phunniemee at 7:44 AM on February 4 [4 favorites]


So. Many. Chairs.
posted by The Riker Who Mounts the World at 7:44 AM on February 4 [17 favorites]


It was ok. I agree that some of the photos were pretty random. Somehow, amongst photos of trips with my husband and baby pictures, there was a picture of someone bending over with floral grannie panties sticking out.

Awesome.

Pretty much a metaphor for my life, I think.
posted by jillithd at 7:44 AM on February 4 [1 favorite]


My "biggest moments", it promised. My "gigantic noggin", it delivered.
posted by goodnewsfortheinsane at 7:45 AM on February 4 [2 favorites]


Better than I expected.... I take WAY too many photos of my dog!
posted by HuronBob at 7:47 AM on February 4 [1 favorite]


The music is by Keith Kenniff of Helios, Goldmund, and Mint Julep.
posted by mkb at 7:47 AM on February 4 [1 favorite]


I would've used a different song.
posted by Pope Guilty at 7:49 AM on February 4 [3 favorites]


I obviously don't use Facebook enough. I got six static pictures, four of which were tags of me in the past couple months and then two old profile pictures. I'm feeling pretty OK with that.
posted by fishmasta at 7:52 AM on February 4 [1 favorite]


I joined facebook in June 2004, but my "early days" doesn't start until 2009, which I attribute to my not owning a camera before then.

Same thing here. I joined in March 2004 and the first thing is from 2009. Before then it was pretty much a wall of text and poking people back and forth. Not too exciting.
posted by vacapinta at 7:52 AM on February 4 [1 favorite]


Even though I reluctantly joined 5 years ago, I didn't really start using Facebook as a communication tool until last year when my partner was sick. And even then, I didn't really start until we started getting good news, which led to, obviously, lots of likes. So my movie looks like it might as be an advertisement for Northwestern Memorial's transplant department with Doctor Who and Teri Garr sprinkled in. And lots of pies.

On reflection, not a bad representation of the last 5 years actually.
posted by MCMikeNamara at 7:55 AM on February 4 [7 favorites]


I think that pb should spend a few moments and code something similar for us here on MeFi....

Sections could include: You most favorited post/comment, photos of your multiple spouses, your flameouts (in bold, all caps of course), your sockpuppet names for those embarrassing askme questions, images you posted in the good old days when images were allowed, the photos of kitties and puppies that you posted (as required by law), your multiple profile pictures, highlights from previously private me-mails, and comments about you made by the mods in that secret user data-base they keep. And it should be available to all of us by clicking on your user name.
posted by HuronBob at 7:55 AM on February 4 [11 favorites]


I dug it.

I got a laugh out of a thing I apparently posted back in 2005 that it dredged back up - "People keep calling the Sex Pistols punk, but I don't think they sound at all like Billy Idol".

I'm still giggling.
posted by Pogo_Fuzzybutt at 7:56 AM on February 4 [8 favorites]


oh man so I just got a minute of dancing with my freshmen year roommates, watching several cousin take their vows, the comment card we got asking for MORE LESBIANS in the library, that time we announced our engagement, and the official posting of my master's degree

I 100% cannot be curmudgeonly about this, I'm legitimately close to tearing up-- it's been a rough couple of weeks emotionally and this is actually a nice way of seeing things
posted by jetlagaddict at 7:59 AM on February 4 [9 favorites]


A surprising number of photos of hot dogs. Also, a photo of a couple of MeFites.

I joined Facebook in 2007. It's 2014 now. Holy shit, that's like, about a hundred years.
posted by bondcliff at 7:59 AM on February 4 [2 favorites]


Movie? Mine was six completely random pictures on a page. Am I missing something?

Mine had three acts and a few inspired monologues, but the set design was shabby and the director seemed disinterested. Would I pay $15 to see it? No, but if it hits Netflix I'll probably check it out again. What can I say? I like blue thumbs.
posted by (Arsenio) Hall and (Warren) Oates at 7:59 AM on February 4 [12 favorites]


Evidently I drink a lot. And cook.
posted by elwoodwiles at 8:01 AM on February 4


A fiend of mine once located a photo of a mildly famous English television presenter which he observed looked a lot like me due to the angle and cropping. Leery of Facebook's facial recognition software exploits, I have used that as my profile photo for some time, and so I just had a heartwarming mini-movie about... this mildly famous English television presenter.
posted by ricochet biscuit at 8:02 AM on February 4 [12 favorites]


Mine is great! I wish there was a way to share it. Is there? They hit a bunch of important things in my life. Really cool.

So, how can I capuure or share?
posted by cccorlew at 8:02 AM on February 4


Mine just had my user pic and "Thanks!"; no movie at all. I win the Minimalist User Award!
posted by languagehat at 8:02 AM on February 4 [15 favorites]


I don't need this to fondly remember my experience of The Beginning of Facebook.

My best friend from high school and I both went to college in Boston. I went to Olin College (the country's newest college) and she went to Harvard (the country's oldest). During her freshman year she happened to live upstairs from Chris Hughes and was buddies with him onward into the Facebook founding years. I remember at one point discussing someone she had encountered at a party and she said "Hang on, let me look her up in the facebook to show you." The what now, I asked? "The facebook. It's an online version of the print thing we get that shows us pictures of everyone in our class. My friend Chris worked on it." And so it was.

Then suddenly the facebook expanded beyond Harvard. Schools were added one by one, based on some strange algorithm that I assumed was some combination of who the founders knew and how big/"important" the school was. Needless to say, our little 300 person brand new school didn't really rate, despite our petition efforts, my emailing Chris Hughes directly and dropping my friend's name, everyone begging every @thefacebook.com address listed on the website, etc. So instead we started signing up through whatever means were available to us: mostly summer internships at other universities, and cross-registration. Since our college had a cross-registration agreement with Wellesley College, there were quite a few male "Wellesley students" in the early day of Facebook.

I remember the day in 2005 (Dec 8, in fact) we were suddenly deemed Okay Enough to join Facebook. Olin was added. I think all non-Facebook activity at the entire college just stopped for 24 hours. We all added each other and any faculty members (who were all mostly on thanks to their PhD alma mater's email addresses) we could find. We finally added all our friends from other schools. We started the process of figuring out how to manage two different profiles, our "fake" ones from our other institution email addresses versus our Olin ones. All very chaotic.

And then shortly after it opened up to the whole world and we felt very put out. We'd waited years to join, and then you just let ANYONE on? Including our parents? The hell! And after all the excitement of finally being "legit" enough to join, it was all kind of downhill from there.

That said, Facebook is the only reason I managed to reconnect with my now-husband after our first meeting, so, y'know, thanks, Facebook!
posted by olinerd at 8:03 AM on February 4 [8 favorites]


Mine was a bit meh, since most of the pictures it threw up were within the last year, or old ones that I remember pretty well because I go back through old pictures semi-often. The posts that got the most "likes" are sort of meh as well, they're nice photos I took of not-very-good friends that somehow snowballed to 50+ likes because they have enormous families who are all on facebook.
posted by BungaDunga at 8:03 AM on February 4


I'm sort of annoyed that even though I joined in 2006, it didn't show anything before 2010. But it did show a LOT of pictures of my puppy, which is most of what I post now, so that made up for it.
posted by lunasol at 8:05 AM on February 4


Winky wanky woo
posted by Monkeymoo at 8:05 AM on February 4 [2 favorites]


My most liked statuses were about my first wedding anniversary and a recent one about playing Where Did the Cat Barf.

I...I have no idea what that means.


(The pics it chose were of my wedding, my Old Lady Cat, and when we got Chubby Cat. If it had shown me pics of my beloved Black Cat that died four years ago I would have thrown my laptop out of the fucking window because I don't need twee music set to one of my biggest heartbreaks, THANK YOU.)
posted by Kitteh at 8:06 AM on February 4 [1 favorite]


Where Did the Cat Barf

I can't not read that in the cadence of "What Does The Fox Say" and now neither can anyone who read this comment.
posted by griphus at 8:07 AM on February 4 [60 favorites]


Heh! I was all nervous that their l33t ninja data-mining skills would produce something that would creep me out, NSA-style.

Instead it totally missed any pictures of me drinking, of which there are plenty, and featured a picture I took of my trash can.
posted by Cookiebastard at 8:08 AM on February 4 [1 favorite]


Where Did the Cat Barf

hack hack hack hack hack hack hack

blurf blurf blurf blurf blurf blurf blurf

spewdy doody spewdy spew

Where Did the Cat Barf
posted by Gronk at 8:13 AM on February 4 [32 favorites]


This was just beautiful. I saw pictures of my husband before he was such, I saw us having fun together, just the two of us. I saw updates of when my babies were born and pictures of them growing up, and I saw me being me, not Wifey or Mama or anyone else.

Like.
posted by Liesl at 8:14 AM on February 4 [3 favorites]


Oh yeah, my FB video was kind of cool too. I haven't learned to correctly date my pictures though so it has our 2nd child dated correctly but a picture from our wedding (many years earlier) dated a year or two after the 2nd child.
posted by Gronk at 8:15 AM on February 4 [1 favorite]


The most addicting website since The Blue.’
posted by misteraitch at 8:16 AM on February 4 [13 favorites]


This would have been pretty cool if so many of the people in the photos hadn't died since I posted them.
posted by Jairus at 8:18 AM on February 4


That was surprisingly well done, but it was still a bit creepy.
posted by Curious Artificer at 8:19 AM on February 4


Yes! My obscene tweet which got broadcast on the American Airlines jumbotron at SXSW made the final cut!
posted by grumpybear69 at 8:20 AM on February 4 [5 favorites]


Almost every photo I ever bothered sharing on Facebook was a picture of my ex. I am now terrified to click this in case there are some I forgot to delete. The trouble with these things is that they have no way to know what's heartwarming and what's traumatic.
posted by Sequence at 8:21 AM on February 4


Google+ did this for my co-worker's photos from last year as a kind of Happy New Year thing. It started off pretty good with some travel photos and everything, but then the last few ended up being shots of bar codes and MAC addresses for work.
posted by ODiV at 8:21 AM on February 4 [4 favorites]


I must have scrubbed my profile something fierce, because I joined in 2004 and used to post a LOT and still almost everything is from 2012-2013. And the earliest picture it could find for me was some cupcakes I made on July 4, 2010.

So. At least it didn't make me feel terrible about every bad decision I made in my early 20s?
posted by likeatoaster at 8:21 AM on February 4 [1 favorite]


I'm in a tie for minimalism with languagehat. Just my profile image in a little circle. Clearly I have mastered the Facebook.
posted by pipeski at 8:21 AM on February 4 [3 favorites]


I'm not coming out of my trailer unless I got Executive Producer credit!
posted by Brandon Blatcher at 8:23 AM on February 4


almost everything is from 2012-2013.

Mine too. I think that was after the bulk of people I interact with there had joined. So make an offhand comment like "Winter is not the boss of me" in 2008 and no one really givesa shit, a few likes. But now that people use the like button to indicate assent or "yeah that's funny" or "Hey I read this" it's just LIKELIKELIKE everyplace so I have some heavily liked things recently and very few heavily liked things from a few years earlier and I don't think it's because I'm any less "like"able.
posted by jessamyn at 8:25 AM on February 4 [1 favorite]


I suspect I'm not alone in this so I'm just going to say it, Facebook seems really fond of my exes
posted by Blasdelb at 8:29 AM on February 4 [3 favorites]


I don't use FB for general photo sharing and storage. The only photos I put on FB are mobile photos when I'm out doing something. Lots of pictures of my daughter at horse shows in the early years, which was sort of bittersweet as she is off to college in the fall and we will have to find the horse a new home this summer. Now that I think about it, the photos and featured status updates were heavily weighted to my daughter, with few mentions of my son. Not sure what is up with that. Maybe the algorithm finds a blond girl with a horse more interesting? Or maybe since so many of my son's photos are hiding his face behind a fencing mask FB doesn't find those interesting?

Not poorly done at all though.
posted by COD at 8:33 AM on February 4


Meeting Nixon at the Whitehouse and being Richard Briers were certainly among the highlights of my past ten years. But making a stupid pun about the pope?
posted by popcassady at 8:33 AM on February 4 [1 favorite]


almost everything is from 2012-2013.

Well, I think a lot of this is that the "Like!" didn't even exist until about 3 years ago.
posted by phunniemee at 8:34 AM on February 4


The like button is actually five years old on Sunday.
posted by jessamyn at 8:36 AM on February 4 [1 favorite]


Ha! This comes across exactly like what a robot would think was important about my life since 2010 (despite joining in 2005). It includes two status updates from last week, the "early" stuff is from 2011 and 2012, and there's a fair amount of just flat-out nonsense.

And since the music was hilariously dramatic, I figured I'd go for the traditional over-serious montage music.
posted by klangklangston at 8:37 AM on February 4 [1 favorite]


Vizify has had this for your Twitter account for two years now.
posted by fifteen schnitzengruben is my limit at 8:39 AM on February 4


People delete photos of their exes from facebook? I thought one was meant to stalk them?
posted by fistynuts at 8:40 AM on February 4


Huh, mine came up with no photos of exes at all. I _think_ I had them marked as relationships in Facebook, so maybe it avoids exes intentionally, if it knows they're an ex?
posted by kaibutsu at 8:45 AM on February 4


"Remember your divorce? Wasn't it magical? And here's that three-night stand you had the next week!"
posted by kaibutsu at 8:45 AM on February 4 [11 favorites]


Mine was actually pretty cool. Photos of me and the hubster, my kids, my pets, some funny comments, and it was a fairly accurate accounting of my last 10 years, as far as highlights go. I'd have to hit the like button for this one.
posted by Kokopuff at 8:45 AM on February 4


I am unsurprised that the most common themes of my fb are getting gay married, booze, and cats.
posted by rtha at 8:46 AM on February 4 [1 favorite]


"Huh, mine came up with no photos of exes at all."

I'm lucky enough to have been dating the same girl the entire time Facebook has existed.
posted by klangklangston at 8:46 AM on February 4 [4 favorites]


Mine also had a lot of emphasis on this picture of recursive Tom Sellick moustache.
posted by kaibutsu at 8:47 AM on February 4 [1 favorite]


One big problem (as I'm scrolling back through) seems to be that it didn't pick up notes at all, and up until they stopped supporting blogger feeds, a lot of my content was through notes.

A lot of it also involved the words "fuck" and "facebook," often together.
posted by klangklangston at 8:48 AM on February 4


Yeah, I also noticed had a absence of ex photos. Although I'm not sure how conspicuous that absence is because I think there was a mutual untagging of photos happening after certain relationships expired.

I sincerely hope I never have to travel back in time and find myself in a situation where I need to explain Facebook-era dating to anyone.
posted by griphus at 8:49 AM on February 4


The videos themselves are available for download from Akamai with a little hunting through the page source. Look for [["params", " and then copy the following string, which is long and full of Unicode escape chars. Then go here to unescape the Unicode using the Javascript decoder. Then go here to decode the result. Bam! You will have your video URL!
posted by grumpybear69 at 8:49 AM on February 4 [6 favorites]


bondcliff: "A surprising number of photos of hot dogs. Also, a photo of a couple of MeFites.

I joined Facebook in 2007. It's 2014 now. Holy shit, that's like, about a hundred years.
"

I started using Livejournal in 2001, and I still use it, that's gotta be like, then, about two hundred years, eh?
posted by symbioid at 8:51 AM on February 4 [1 favorite]


The video was almost entirely pictures of my kids. How can I possibly object to that?

One most liked status message that said, "Show of hands please, who knows what Soylent Green is?" Which... we'll just ignore the juxtaposition of that status message with the ultracute baby pictures, shall we?

Also, two of the pictures that had the most likes were of major life events, which makes sense.
posted by zarq at 8:53 AM on February 4 [1 favorite]


Because i am an old this feels more like a movie of what i did this month despite joining fb in 2007.
posted by srboisvert at 8:54 AM on February 4 [1 favorite]


I just saw a short black and white Dadaist film that looked like it had been copied from VHS.
posted by benzenedream at 8:54 AM on February 4 [1 favorite]


I started using Livejournal in 2001, and I still use it, that's gotta be like, then, about two hundred years, eh?

Having at one point exported to PDF my Livejournal entries from ages 17-22 and leafed through them, I am just so, so glad Livejournal is not doing something like this.
posted by griphus at 8:54 AM on February 4 [5 favorites]


Mine was okay; a little random, perhaps. I did enjoy that one of the pictures it highlighted was this one.
posted by Wordshore at 8:56 AM on February 4


Been on Facebook since 2009, met my wife in 2011. Apparently, my life before I met her consisted of taking pictures of toy soldiers. Which is actually pretty accurate.
posted by marxchivist at 8:57 AM on February 4


lol flash required? What year is this? Just as well, I don't really need to be reminded about my marriage, divorce, and the death of my father.
posted by entropicamericana at 8:59 AM on February 4


I'm lucky enough to have been dating the same girl the entire time Facebook has existed.

If she was looking at your screen just then, blink twice for yes.
posted by Celsius1414 at 8:59 AM on February 4 [6 favorites]


I tend to shy away from Facebook so mine was full of pictures of my knitting, my cats and my cats wearing my knitting. My most liked photo has a really active Facebook person tagged with me. Of course.
posted by MaritaCov at 9:02 AM on February 4


The first thing it showed me was a picture of me costumed as Marlene Dietrich, then photos of things I had made. The most-liked statuses were of some milestones in the progress of my knitting blog. It's a little comforting to realize my life doesn't look as sad as it is to those whose only real window to it is my Facebook posts.
posted by orange swan at 9:02 AM on February 4 [2 favorites]


The last 8 years of my life apparently boil down to:

Sailing, sailing, daughter, wife's cancer/death, daughter, surfing, family, daughter, daughter, daughter, daughter, daughter, daughter...

I thought it'd be cool to bookend it with more sailing, but oh well.
posted by tylerkaraszewski at 9:03 AM on February 4 [1 favorite]


Having at one point exported to PDF my Livejournal entries from ages 17-22 and leafed through them, I am just so, so glad Livejournal is not doing something like this.

Having recently leafed through my notebooks from high school and college, I am so, so glad the internet didn't exist back then for the teenaged me to post to.
posted by aught at 9:03 AM on February 4 [7 favorites]


Mine is mostly really old pictures from way before Facebook existed, because I only joined at first to scan them and share them with their subjects. So there we are in our 20s and there are the 20something kids when they were toddlers and it's all very bittersweet, yes, but the high points of my last five years are just looking at old pictures? Gods that's depressing.
posted by mygothlaundry at 9:04 AM on February 4 [1 favorite]


I'm another person who joined early-ish (2005) but whose 'early days' photos start in late 2012.

This did, however, remind me of the time when my mom attempted to explain the Internet definition of 'Santorum' to my grandma over Thanksgiving dinner. Props for that.
posted by ActionPopulated at 9:05 AM on February 4 [1 favorite]


I'm a little paranoid that if I watch my video to the end and my life is found wanting, I'll get eaten by Ammit the Devourer of Souls.
posted by prize bull octorok at 9:09 AM on February 4 [3 favorites]


Apparently I post a lot of pictures of my kids. In my defense, they are adorable.
posted by Pater Aletheias at 9:12 AM on February 4 [2 favorites]


So how was this done? Did they actually run an algorithm on each user and pre-render millions of videos to Akamai? Or is this created "on the fly" because not all users will end up ever seeing this?
posted by monospace at 9:14 AM on February 4


This image appeared several times in my video. What is Mark trying to tell me?
posted by I'm Doing the Dishes at 9:19 AM on February 4 [2 favorites]


I barely use Facebook and use it mostly to follow some friends and message them / like some stuff on their timelines.

I just tried this and my "video" is a static shot of the profile pic I put up in 2007 and a thank you. So did I just win at Facebook or lose at life?

(On preview: /waves at fellow hermit -- if there is such a thing -- languagehat)
posted by maudlin at 9:23 AM on February 4


I'm curious how they chose the profile photo to focus on. I've been using the one of me playing the tuba for a long time but for some reason it felt Kirk screaming "Kaaaaaaaaaaaaahn!" was more representative.

Also I don't have many Facebook friends. Most likes on a post - 10. Which is a pretty high %.
posted by charred husk at 9:24 AM on February 4


My most favorited (non-photo) post was a conversation with my son about how he dipped his butt in the toilet to "see how deep it was".

Which I swear, I posted less than 2 days ago. And somehow it's my top post ever?
posted by caution live frogs at 9:28 AM on February 4 [1 favorite]


Interesting "movie" - apparently software has now entirely replaced Ken Burns.
posted by exogenous at 9:30 AM on February 4 [2 favorites]


Mine is simply a profile pic (actually my tuxedo kitty's pic.)

Another boring introvert here.
posted by mightshould at 9:33 AM on February 4


I got six images, all posted by me in the past six months. That's it.

Weird.
posted by feckless fecal fear mongering at 9:42 AM on February 4


Mine was actually pretty sweet EXCEPT for some reason they think that some picture I shared of the Obama poster is the most important thing in my life (center picture when it starts and then when it leaves and maybe in the middle)
posted by bottlebrushtree at 9:44 AM on February 4


daughter, daughter, daughter, daughter, SWAT bus, daughter

One of these things is not like the others. You must tell this story.
posted by desjardins at 9:50 AM on February 4 [1 favorite]


daughter, daughter, daughter, daughter, SWAT bus, daughter

One of these things is not like the others. You must tell this story.


The Friday after the Boston Marathon was interesting in East Watertown, and while we weren't in the door-to-door search zone, we got to see an increasingly impressive bunch of vehicles driving down to the Target parking lot/central command zone. It's not even a good picture of the SWAT bus (a block away with a phone camera), but by that point everyone I knew from high school was following my FB feed, so it got some likes.
posted by Elementary Penguin at 9:53 AM on February 4


That was surprisingly well-done. I only randomly use Facebook, and only after deleting my original account, so it's only the last couple years for me but the production quality of it was impressive, and kind of daunting when you think of the sheer scale necessary to do that for every single user. Nice work, Facebook!
posted by mathowie at 10:01 AM on February 4


So mine is robber baron cosplay, running, cats and um, bowling. Sounds about right.
posted by octothorpe at 10:01 AM on February 4 [1 favorite]


My social network and I must be well-behaved posters and likers, because mine came together really well:

First moments: Top posts: Photos shared: posted by The Tensor at 10:05 AM on February 4


In a similar vein, Time Magazine put together a tool to measure how much time you've spent/wasted on Facebook. I took them at their average guesstimate of 17 minutes a visit, and let it crawl back through my time line, counting posts as marker of visits. Have enough for nearly 3 full weeks, not bad for 18 months of active use.
posted by ZeusHumms at 10:05 AM on February 4


You do realise this is a cynical ploy to make you think Skynet is just a data mining algorithm, randomly churning through your FB history and occasionaly hitting on some goofy associations, right?
posted by Dr Dracator at 10:06 AM on February 4


But making a stupid pun about the pope?

The Ex Benedict one? I like that one.
posted by ricochet biscuit at 10:10 AM on February 4


I would really like to see other people's videos. It'd be nice if Facebook let you share yours.

I would like to know how they picked the "most liked posts." For me it definitely wasn't the posts with the most raw numbers of Likes.

This image appeared several times in my video. What is Mark trying to tell me?

That you farted? There aren't too many possible interpretations here.
posted by grouse at 10:11 AM on February 4


If you watch the video, there is a "Share your video" button on the upper-right. It just embeds it on your timeline, tho; I don't think you can download it..
posted by Elementary Penguin at 10:14 AM on February 4 [1 favorite]


Huh. Nothing for me but the same picture I use everywhere on social media and thanks. Not surprising, as all my heartfelt, fuzzy warm memories are on much more homebrew, non-commercial media.

If I want the same warm feels I'll need to dig out my old Mirc logs.
posted by MartinWisse at 10:15 AM on February 4 [1 favorite]


It's totally possible I missed it, but I swear that was not there earlier this morning.
posted by grouse at 10:21 AM on February 4


grouse, it seems they just put it up in the last hour or so.
posted by roomthreeseventeen at 10:23 AM on February 4


I didn't see it earlier this morning, either, grouse, so who knows?
posted by Elementary Penguin at 10:23 AM on February 4


Apparently roomthreeseventeen knows!
posted by Elementary Penguin at 10:25 AM on February 4 [1 favorite]


I find this works best when you mute the upbeat music and instead have Johnny Cash's "Hurt" playing in the background.
posted by naju at 10:31 AM on February 4 [15 favorites]


Also, I joined Facebook around 2005. They have my "first moments" in 2009, though. What gives.
posted by naju at 10:34 AM on February 4


Very cool, but really striking is that I've only been on it for five years when it seems like it has taken over our lives FOREVER.
posted by Big_B at 10:36 AM on February 4


I read far more than I post on Facebook, but it still scraped together enough to make a movie.

My lookback contained...

A picture of some graffitti saying "Emma woz 'ere" in an old school exercise book, which I scanned in many years later after I reconnected with Emma on Facebook, because I wanted to remind her that in 1995 she had indeed been "ere".

Vacation pictures.

A picture of my nails painted to look like ladybirds/ladybugs with the caption "I blame Pinterest."

A picture of me in an evening gown contact-juggling a small cabbage in the bar of the Hilton. (But c'mon who doesn't have a pic or two of that on their Facebook?)

A post saying "The nice thing about taking on terrifying new responsibilities is how simple and achievable all your existing responsibilities suddenly look."

A post saying "What did I get up to at work today? Oh, y'know... I copy-edited some Doctor Who fanfiction. Shouldn't I have been doing some work, you say? This was for work. Sometimes my job is awesomely ridiculous."

Halloween costume.

Prank photo of me holding an invitation to the royal wedding. An idea I shamelessly ripped off from somebody on Twitter and which brought a ton of (gullible) people I'd lost touch with out of the woodwork.

Multiple screenshots of advertisements. IDEK.

Picture of a dog on a train which frankly doesn't do justice to a) just how fucking huge the dog was and b) its awesomely nonchalant attitude. Everything about its posture was saying "Dog on the seat? What dog? I'm just a commuter the same as the rest of you." I half expected it to start flicking through a copy of the Metro..

Picture of my BFF holding my nephew, while my niece straight up glares at her.

A bunch of pictures of the same friend, drunk, with penises drawn on her face in permanent marker, all of which were taken in public, with her full consent, on separate occasions. (Juvenile running gag is juvenile.)


...I'm not sure what the takeaway from this video is other than that I'm a colossal dork and frankly, I'd already made my peace with that.
posted by the latin mouse at 10:49 AM on February 4 [1 favorite]


I really enjoyed that, much more than I would have thought. I'm curious about the technology. It really comes together seamlessly. Impressive.
posted by Kwine at 10:52 AM on February 4


Mine makes it plain I've spent the last 5 years almost completely engrossed in my family life...
posted by saulgoodman at 10:56 AM on February 4


...apparently software has now entirely replaced Ken Burns

I have an inordinate number of photos of Antietam (Sharpsburg) battlefield uploaded to fb, so I am forced to agree with this 100%. (Also, I really need to start taking more photos of live people.)
posted by JimInLoganSquare at 11:00 AM on February 4


Amazing how quickly it went from a college kids social/dating site to a sharing pictures of your grandkids site.
posted by octothorpe at 11:01 AM on February 4 [2 favorites]


All of my "look back" photos were of people drunk or in similarly compromising situations. Oh, college.
posted by schroedinger at 11:04 AM on February 4


Amazing how quickly it went from a college kids social/dating site to a sharing pictures of your grandkids site.

Well, to be fair, that pretty much coincided with the change from "must have a specific sort of .edu email address" to "must have a computer."
posted by phunniemee at 11:05 AM on February 4 [3 favorites]


I must be one of the lurkers/not posters. All I got was 6 photos (and not particularly special or old photos). No music, no movie.
posted by aka burlap at 11:10 AM on February 4


Pretty neat. Although a nice picture of my grandfather and cousin was followed up with this.
posted by brundlefly at 11:12 AM on February 4


I must be one of the lurkers/not posters. All I got was 6 photos (and not particularly special or old photos). No music, no movie.

Same with me. And none of them newer than about two years ago. I'm ok with that.
posted by Thorzdad at 11:14 AM on February 4


2 of 6 still photos on mine were...my sister's friends? That one time they came to my birthday 6 or 7 years ago? Really?

The background photos were nice, as it swooped between boring photos. The old pics I've scanned and uploaded for occasions like my deceased grandpa's birthday did make me feel misty. Then the last picture was of my boyfriend wearing sunglasses and waving around our two-month's salary in fat stacks of pink renminbi.

My most liked post is about my car being towed. WTF, friends?
posted by MsDaniB at 11:21 AM on February 4


I think mine may be unique in that it includes the phrase "Chicken fuckin".
posted by brundlefly at 11:24 AM on February 4


Thankfully it has less pictures of the TV taken from the sofa than the look back at 2013 had.
posted by Artw at 11:29 AM on February 4


I use facebook quite a bit, and get tagged in photos quite a bit, and I just got the 6 static photos, the first of which wasn't even actually of me.
posted by Navelgazer at 11:40 AM on February 4


Cat pictures. Cat pictures all the way down.
posted by sonmi at 11:45 AM on February 4 [1 favorite]


Hmph I just have 6 stills on a page. Is it cuz I's whack?

SRSLY I have putted more than 6 pix up.
posted by Mister_A at 11:52 AM on February 4


Perhaps it's still being rolled out?
posted by brundlefly at 11:54 AM on February 4


I simply have this photo, swooping around to the strains of "The Way We Were."
posted by octobersurprise at 11:56 AM on February 4 [3 favorites]


Still better than mine, octobersurprise.
posted by Mister_A at 11:56 AM on February 4


It's not even me!
posted by octobersurprise at 11:57 AM on February 4


What a lovely montage of pictures of my cat.
posted by Jacqueline at 12:17 PM on February 4 [3 favorites]


Of all the videos I've watched, I'm the only person I've seen so far who joined Facebook in 2004.
posted by ThePinkSuperhero at 12:20 PM on February 4


Great slate article today: "What was poking?"
posted by Potomac Avenue at 12:27 PM on February 4 [1 favorite]


For the last few months I've been poking back and forth with a cat. I'm not sure what that says about me.
posted by capricorn at 12:57 PM on February 4


Of all the videos I've watched, I'm the only person I've seen so far who joined Facebook in 2004.

Awkward.
posted by grouse at 1:12 PM on February 4


The stories in that poking article are great.

“I remember the first time I got ‘poked,’ by this really freshman guy,” she told me. “My friends and I all gathered around the screen to try to decipher what it meant. Was it flirtatious, or meaningless? I poked back.” She and the poker ended up going steady “for like two months,” she explained.

Metafilter: this really freshman guy.
posted by book 'em dano at 1:23 PM on February 4 [1 favorite]


I joined FB in 2007, after leaving an internet community I'd been part of for years. It definitely filled a space for me.

The video got me when it pulled up my two most-liked statuses: the one announcing my youngest child's birth, and the one I made about being a pall bearer at my grandmother's funeral. And that my most-liked photo was of my older son when he passed a karate belt test also tickled me. The rest was a lovely little trip down memory lane.
posted by Lulu's Pink Converse at 1:28 PM on February 4


-Defeated by Superman
-Defeated by Superman
-Dinner at El Bulli
-Defeated by Superman
-Orbital platform destroyed
-Dinner at Alinea
-Defeated by Superman
-40th Birthday (Astrid y Gaston)
-Atomic railgun destroyed
-Dinner at Noma
-Defeated by Supergirl



This is terrible.
posted by Alexander J. Luthor at 1:30 PM on February 4 [13 favorites]


Mine was the same as @languagehat. My profile pic, and "Thanks!"

OTOH, I post no pictures to Facebook, and rarely anything else, so I shouldn't be surprised.
posted by Archer25 at 1:32 PM on February 4


Lot of zombie photos there.
posted by TheWhiteSkull at 1:35 PM on February 4


Many years ago, I decided to take a page from the book from my friend's husband M., who was a computer programmer who was super paranoid about sharing any personal info online. I joined FB in 2008 but have only used it to promote my illustration and writing. So... the past few years of my life could be described as interesting and dramatic... but there's none of that on FB. Just my paintings and pictures of cats.

Whew!
posted by suburbanbeatnik at 1:36 PM on February 4


Man I looked good back in 2008.
posted by turbid dahlia at 1:41 PM on February 4


Actually, I kind of wanted this to be the background music.


I guess I don't post enough tintypes.
posted by TheWhiteSkull at 1:44 PM on February 4


Surprisingly touching. My open heart surgery and loss of our dog posts went perfectly with the music.

Very cool.
posted by DieHipsterDie at 2:13 PM on February 4


Huh. Four years of adventurous shenanigans in Europe and all it's got for me is pictures of me putting weird stuff on my face? I need to reexamine my social media habits, apparently...
posted by Mooseli at 4:26 PM on February 4


Joined in 2007. My "first moments" were three random photos from the first albums I posted in late 2007/early 2008. My most favourited comments were from 2012 and one from last week.

As Fallout Boy would say, Thnks fr th mmrs.
posted by crossoverman at 4:32 PM on February 4


I was expecting terrible and creepy, but I got boring meh instead.

Good job Facebook, you've exceeded my expectations!
posted by cosmic.osmo at 4:41 PM on February 4


Mine ended with a picture of a 15 foot tall topiary bunny who's posture is very dejected and sad like he's saying: what the hell do I do now.
posted by dog food sugar at 4:59 PM on February 4 [1 favorite]


Zecora, Pinkie Pie, Tank the Tortoise, a WOW Elf, Cardcaptor Sakura and Tinkerbelle. Why! It's like they know me!
posted by SPrintF at 5:41 PM on February 4


Mine just had my user pic and "Thanks!"; no movie at all. I win the Minimalist User Award!

Languagehat, pipeski, and BlueHorse--It's a three way tie!

My user pic is, of course, a blue horse.

Facebook, you do not know me.
posted by BlueHorse at 6:32 PM on February 4


I'm looking forward to the 20-year version. I obviously don't deserve my privacy.
posted by grouse at 6:37 PM on February 4


seeing as how
1. i share quite a bit, picture wise, on facebook
2. i have been on FB for 7 years
3. in the time since i joined facebook i got married and had two kids
4. I just drank a double IPA

I am a blubbery weepy mess now.
posted by Stonestock Relentless at 7:01 PM on February 4 [5 favorites]


I had the opposite reaction, I wish I'd given them more meaningful data. All I got from the early years were a few random pictures of strangers that I can't remember.
posted by blue_beetle at 7:29 on February 4 [4 favorites +] [!]


All I got from the early years were a few random pictures of strangers that I can't remember.

I am SO stealing that line for a song.
posted by flapjax at midnite at 7:31 on February 4 [59 favorites +] [!]


Thank you for the spark of inspiration, blue_beetle. Here's the song.
posted by flapjax at midnite at 10:51 PM on February 4 [6 favorites]


It must be so depressing for the Google+ photos team that they did pretty much this exact feature at the end of last year as a sort of holiday gift but they have so few active users that nobody's even pointing out what a ripoff this is :(
posted by town of cats at 5:30 AM on February 5 [2 favorites]


Ha, that's right, town of cats - I thought the idea seemed familiar!
posted by exogenous at 5:51 AM on February 5


I wish I could replace it with CakeFarts.
posted by dr_dank at 6:09 AM on February 5


YES FACEBOOK I KNOW I MOSTLY JUST POST LARP TREK STRIPS THANK YOU FOR PUTTING SO FINE A POINT ON IT AND oh hey that's right I shaved my head that one time
posted by cortex at 7:09 AM on February 5 [2 favorites]


I was also expecting corny and dumb, but two of my 3 top statuses were me passing the HSK 4 and the day I posted "Today I am 100% debt free". So now I feel pretty dang awesome about my life.
posted by chainsofreedom at 7:46 AM on February 5


My daughter and I talked about this a bit last night, wondering where they were coming up with their choices, since some of them seemed so random. Our conclusion: the algorithm is looking for words like celebration, proud, happy, family, birth, wedding, reunion - stuff like that - and it's picking photos of big groups of people, preferably tagged, over pictures of individuals. The best one though was my friend Brian who only ever posts creepy pictures and LiveLeak videos. The music really tied them all together, from the burning trailer to the guys in bras pic.
posted by mygothlaundry at 8:37 AM on February 5 [4 favorites]


Someone on Hacker News claimed to be a Facebook employee and said they would release some details about how it worked soon, but right now they were exhausted from rushing to get it done on time.
posted by grouse at 9:07 AM on February 5


Man I looked good back in 2008.

Yeah, that profile photo from when I signed up really underscored what a lard butt I've become since then.
posted by brundlefly at 11:07 AM on February 5


My friends' videos are all poignant montages of important life milestones. Mine is mainly about the time John Waters drew a moustache on my face with a sharpie, the time I saw some dude in a gorilla suit dancing in the street behind Royal Festival Hall, and the time I listened to The Wicker Man soundtrack while doing aqua-aerobics in London Fields Lido. The final, haunting image of a saturnine monkey felt like a rebuke.
posted by EXISTENZ IS PAUSED at 7:35 PM on February 5 [3 favorites]


This is gonna be such a great meme.
posted by jacquilynne at 8:52 PM on February 5 [4 favorites]


Uh... John Waters drawing a moustache on your face with a sharpie IS an rather important life milestone.
posted by dog food sugar at 3:00 PM on February 7 [2 favorites]


An Honest Facebook Movie:
"March 17, 2010, we joined Facebook and friended a bunch of people we now regret"

"My first poke was from my Dad
Don't think he knows what that means
Then again neither do I"

"Zero.
The number of times my political views changed because of someone's post in my feed
932
Number of times I've X'd out of an event invitation before even reading what it is"
posted by filthy light thief at 11:12 AM on February 8 [1 favorite]


I have two accounts... and found out the hard way that I forgot to delete a picture of a former friend I recently cut out of my life. Ouch.
posted by luckynerd at 4:51 PM on February 9


You can now edit your Look Back movie.
posted by grouse at 6:08 AM on February 10 [1 favorite]


I get that these movies were random but I also thought that was what was great about them. If people can edit them and put in the photos and statuses they want, everyone will just put the best photos. Ugh.
posted by crossoverman at 5:50 PM on February 10 [1 favorite]


I agree, crossoverman.

Facebook Look Back - Walter White
posted by grouse at 6:13 AM on February 11


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