The initial Facebook URL landgrab to get a vanity name against your profile.
If you are into Social Media and the Internet — the Facebook.com/Vanity-URL experience is — or speaking in past-tense was — a must for you. On the 13th June 2009 at approximately 2PM Melbourne, Australia (GMT+10) — Facebook opened their service to include Vanity Urls — that is, instead of the old “facebook.com/profile.php?id=123456789” — you could now have “facebook.com/YourName”. If you still haven’t done this, you need to goto www.facebook.com/username/.
The response was unbelievable — more than 500,000 names were registered within the first 10 minutes. Lucky for me, I was able to secure the exact name I wanted — which makes things much easier now to tell everyone where to find me on Facebook. Unfortunately, for the millions of users who did not login when the process began — most, if not all, of the common English name associations would be taken inferring — much like emails — that you will have to have a combination of letters and numbers and wont be able to secure the name you want.
My name is common with more more than 1000 other people around the world — so having to be quick off the mark was pretty essential. Luckily — the exact name I wanted was not one of the “suggested” names or combinations — so I had to select more “Choose your Own Name”. My trick was that I had previously setup “Copy/Paste” for my name, so I was able to quickly hit Ctrl+V on this field and then select the “Set Username” — meaning that I was luckily enough to get in immediately — while more than likely, another Tim Davis around the world was typing the exact name. I was in all likelihood — only milliseconds ahead.
Now you may be reading this post thinking “you are such a nerd” — but for me — having an easy-to-remember facebook URL makes life so much simplier. I can tell friends, family, colleagues and business associates where they can find me on Facebook without forcing them to remember combinations of letters and numbers — which often get lost, can’t be remembered and could result in lost opportunities. Considering that once a name is set — it can never be changed — I don’t necessarily think it was such a bad thing to be online for and secure a little piece of Facebook real-estate.
If you secured the name you wanted, drop a note in the comments :)