Review: Facebook: the Missing Manual by E.A. Vander Veer

Cover of Facebook: The Missing Manual, 3rd edition[amazon_link id=”1449397417″ target=”_blank” ]Facebook: The Missing Manual, 3rd edition[/amazon_link] by E. A. Vander Veer is a notable effort. The speed at which Facebook is changing makes it almost impossible to keep a print edition current, yet the 3rd edition is not only current but the author helpfully points out what is likely to be changing in the near future and how that affects the reader. She has done a good job of pulling together the many aspects of a complex and quickly evolving topic.

[amazon_link id=”1449397417″ target=”_blank” ]Facebook: The Missing Manual[/amazon_link] is spot on and has a wealth of helpful ideas. It is a good, albeit cursory, overview of what Facebook can do. Her thoughts on security and privacy echo my own in most cases. While I might question the usefulness of some Facebook features or the efficacy of some uses of Facebook (e.g. using Facebook for project management) her presentation would be helpful to anyone wanting to use them.

This one volume covers everything from logging in to using Facebook for job and resume postings. None of the chapters go into technical detail and there is no coverage of development or API topics. In fact, one complaint might be the very cursory nature of the whole text. The step-by-step instructions that fill the book are exceptionally helpful for the beginner, at least until Facebook changes again. Experienced users will be left wanting for depth. In particular, the business chapters provide good ideas but certainly deserve many more case studies.

The book is not for the rank beginner nor is it suited to the social media savvy. The ideal reader here is the digitally literate user or small business owner who wants to make the most of Facebook but doesn’t have time to experiment or randomly stumble upon tips. A bit of time here would get a user started out right using Facebook either socially or for business.

Disclaimer: As is common in the publishing industry I was given a copy of this book to review.

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