Ever seen those Facebook profile images that look too good to be true?  Here are some great shots of a young boy who seems worth “friending.”

Social Media Funnies

Editor’s note: And speaking of Facebook, be sure to stop by and check  out Social Media Examiner’s new Facebook fan page by clicking here.

Now it’s your turn: Do you feel faces are important in Facebook and social media in general? Ever met someone in the flesh who looks nothing his or her facebook profile? Got a funny story?  Feel like Pinocchio? Please share your story below!

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  • I definitely think faces are important to social media. One of the basic concepts of social media is reaching out on a personal level, and it’s hard to connect with a faceless @username. As for Facebook, I mean, it’s called FACEbook, so it’s definitely important! The way you look in your profile picture leaves an impression. As a college student, I see so many pictures of people wasted and partying, and if I’ve never met them before, it’s hard to get rid of that first impression.

  • kgphotography

    I always look for a photo although I know that it could be a lie. I won’t accept a friendship request from someone who doesn’t have a photo, at least put your dog or a flower. As a photographer, pictures are important to me so if someone doesn’t bother I feel like they have something to hide or that they’re just creepy.

  • I agree, photos are really important to use as your avatar in social media. I really prefer actual photos to cartoon images of yourself, but that’s just my opinion. I also think it helps to be consistent. I use the same avatar photo across multiple platforms so people ‘recognize’ me.

  • I think photos are very important and should always be used over a generic/caricature type avatar. Social networking is about getting to know people – having your image online is vital if you are looking to take connections one step farther.
    I am a Virtual Assistant and primarily work online or via phone with people – having my real face out there allows people to feel they have a closer connection to me personally over an image. When we speak on the phone it goes one more step in the process as the voice recognition kicks in. Then when the rare opportunity to meet someone in person occurs (not often since I am on the East Coast of Canada an clients/friends are located all over the US and Canada) they usually feel like they know me. People will see you across a room and know that it’s Kathy or timeontaskva. The feeling of recognition would not be as strong if they had never seen my face before. It adds so much to the depth of your online relationships and if those are important to you then having your real picture out there is a must.

  • lol thats awesome.. he would have a veryyyyyy long nose after a few days.

  • Love the cartoon! I agree 100% and agree with others that photos should be fairly consistent across all social media platforms. Using several images from the same photo shoot works for variety and consistency.

    To go along with the photo issue, is the name issue. I urge most folks to use their real name with their real photo. I ranted about that this week on my blog and got a lot of feedback on the issue:

    Blog on!

  • Cute Pinocchio! Also agree with others that photos should reflect the authentic you. It’s well worth the investment to hire a photographer to take a quality headshot that you are proud to post. This will help you feel great about it and that comes across in your “virtual” image. Not only should your photo be professional, but your backgrounds and graphics as well. Reflect your brand in its best possible light! Here’s a little more of my take on the subject:

  • Cocodrillo

    Hilarious Sean! Thanks for the giggle. Made my day…Tania

  • caseyhibbard

    This happens all the time: I am trying to find an old friend on Facebook and there are multiple people with her name. Some of them have a pic of their children instead of themselves, so I have no idea which one is right – and so don’t move ahead. Don’t use your kids’ or pets’ pics if you’re not also clearly visible in the photo. It hinders connection.

  • fguzzo

    I personally will not friend anyone who does not have a face photo as part of their profile. Although some have changed the profile photos after they joined, I do my best to follow this simple rule on all social media platforms. Its all about transparency. If you do not have a true photos of you on your profile then you are not branding yourself instead you are branding a photo of a firefly (like Cocodrillo) which means you are not branding at all.

  • Thanks, Sean for another nice way to pause on Friday.
    I think Pinocchio’s shots, while an excellent attempt at variety, misrepresent him by underplaying his most memorable feature — they make him less remarkable. Cute hat, though.
    But as someone who has no FB account and whose “face” on social media is a stylized inkwell, I probably shouldn’t be commenting on photos! But then, it’s a cute inkwell for a writer, don’t you think?? LOL.
    Have a great weekend everyone!

  • Miho K

    I think pictures on social media is really important too. In Japan, people are unwillingly to have their photo or real name shown on their profile, which is a big difference from the U.S. It makes people connect only with somebody you know and somebody you know what name and picture they are using.
    Given that fact, it limits real possibilities and opportunities that Social media could bring in. It does not make any difference from the real world…..
    I believe that your photo,comment,real name will make online networking more real and trustworthy!

  • A high school classmate is planning a reunion. It’s been so long ago that I did not recognize his name when he sent a friend request. But his Facebook profile photo is his high school yearbook picture. Yup! Now I remember the guy. But I suspect I may have a hard time finding him at the reunion this summer. I like to think I haven’t changed since high school back in the 70’s, but I know no one else is convinced. So my photo is current (at least within the past 2 years).

  • I like seeing a current photo of the person who’s writing me, or sending out a status report, because, as silly as this sounds, I can visualize the person making the remark. The remark seems “live”, and personally directed at me instead of the huge friends list that it was probably sent to. On Facebook, it doesn’t bother me when people use a landscape or an animal as their avatar, because they’re already known to me. However, a faceless post doesn’t “engage me”, either, even if it’s a friend. It’s more like I’m scanning bits and pieces of news.

    When I’m reading blog comments, I like to see a face with the comment, because it gives me a fuller “introduction” to the PERSON behind the remark. Right or wrong, a blog commenter’s face CAN pique my curiosity about his or her business or blog theme and influence whether I check out the blog or website. It’s that whole first-impression thing, I guess, and I see the picture + comment as a person joining a conversation, and beckoning me to jump in, too. That being said, I hate it when I post a comment to a blog and I’m not identified by my picture, because, even though I use my name, I feel anonymous and distant from the conversation.

  • seandsouza

    Happy to oblige 🙂

  • Deleting. Accidental double post.

  • janiceclark

    I’m enjoying what I’ve read so far. I intend to use it as a reference book, the kind that will sit dog-eared on my desk for a long time.

  • Faces “connect the dots” a bit in social media. I find they promote more of a connection. One problem with Facebook in particular and often with Twitter is the use of avatars or cartoons rather than real images. With LinkedIn, if someone doesn’t post an image with a profile, I find myself less interested in connecting. It comes off as a halfhearted attempt to be serious about LinkedIn.