Have you ever asked yourself exactly what does it mean to poke someone on Facebook? Facebook added the odd “poke” feature with no real purpose except as an additional method you can use to say hello or attract your friend’s attention.
Some people consider it annoying, others consider it as a form of flirting, and others just use it to get their friend to wake up and start posting updates again. This means that at the moment there’s no real accepted “poking etiquette,” and people are pretty much making up their own rules. In simple technical terms, a “poke” is a link that you click on under someone’s profile picture in order to post a message on their Facebook page that you’ve just poked them. That’s really all there is to it – it’s simple. Or is it?
Since “poking” is basically the process of posting a message to your friend’s wall to wake them up, flirt or annoy – why couldn’t you do the same thing with a simple message? The fact is – you can. And message “poking” adds a bit of flexibility and fun to the process.
How to Poke a Friend
Experienced Facebook users can skip over this section, but I’m including it for those of you who are very new to Facebook and you’ve never used the poke feature before. This explanation strictly the Facebook “Poke” feature – not the message approach. First, go to a friend’s profile and take a look under the profile picture.
Underneath their photo is where you’ll find the “Poke <name>” feature. Poking someone is as simple as clicking on that link under their photo. Once you do this, a new window pops up asking you to confirm.
Once you click the “Poke” button – the person will receive a poke notification on their wall and they’ll see that you just poked them. As you can see – there’s no way to tell a person why you just poked them – so it’s up to the other person to read into your motivations, and of course this can lead to misunderstanding and confusion. But then again, isn’t that the fun of a social network? Don’t worry though, this is only the very simplest version of “poking” on Facebook. There are lots of other ways to do it that are a lot more fun.
2 Cool Ways to Poke People on Facebook
For experienced Facebook users, the standard Poke feature is old hat. If you want to take the “poking” approach to get your friend’s attention, you’ll want to install the Facebook Superpoke! application.
The Superpoke! is a much more interactive method you can use to send over the kind of pokes that’ll leave very little room for misunderstanding. For example, go ahead and blow a kiss at the girl you’re trying to date. Send a high five poke to a friend who just aced an exam. Or maybe even dropkick someone for saying something stupid. Once you’ve installed SuperPoke!, all you have to do is go to the person’s profile and just under the status box, you can click on the “more” drop-down arrow. If they have SuperPoke! installed on their profile, you’ll see the option there.
Even if they don’t have it installed – have no fear, you can still Superpoke! a friend – just go back to the Superpoke! app and on the right side you’ll see a box where you can select who to superpoke from your list of friends.
Go ahead and superpoke anyone you want. As you can see, this version of poking lets you add a message to your poke. The odds are that they’ll find it so funny they’ll probably install the app and poke you back. Beware – superpoking is addictive!
The second form of poking that some people use is ASCII art pokes. Instead of using any sort of poke feature, you can send someone a message in the form of a poke in ASCII Text.
You can do quite a bit with ASCII art, if you know how. If you’re curious how you can create images with simple ASCII keys, check out Saikat’s article on keyboard techniques to create cool symbols. You can really go crazy with ASCII art (and a lot of people do!)
So, what does it mean to you when you poke someone on Facebook? Hopefully, these two new methods to poke your friends has inspired you to prod those friends into becoming a little more active and posting some fresh new updates to their status. Do you know of any other cool ways to poke people in Facebook? Share your own techniques in the comments section below.