Daily Independent (Ashland, KY)

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February 5, 2014

Mark Maynard: Beatles, Facebook celebrate 50 and 10: 02/06/14

ASHLAND — There are a couple of interesting anniversaries this week, both which have had life-changing impact on many people.

Say happy anniversary to the Beatles, who 50 years ago this week arrived in the United States and performed on this soil.

Two days after arriving in the U.S. on Feb. 7, 1964, the Beatles appeared on The Ed Sullivan Show. Neilsen Ratings estimated that 45 percent of U.S. television viewers — 73 million of them — that night had the dial on that station.

So the biggest moment in the history of popular music happened right then, forever changing how everybody looked at music. You wonder if anybody really knew?

The CBS Evening News ran a story about the Beatles’ arrival on Feb. 7 where the correspondent said, “The British Invasion this time goes by the code name Beatlemania.”

Of course, by April, the Beatles held the top five positions on the Billboard Hot 100 singles chart and never looked back.

The group’s unbelievable chart success included at least two of their singles holding the top spot on the Hot 100 during each of the seven consecutive years from 1964 to 1970 when they broke up.

Also, say happy anniversary to Faceback, which turned 10 this week.

How many out there can imagine life without Facebook these days?

It has become a way of communication in the world today and, just think, we didn’t even have it 10 years ago.

Co-founder Mark Zuckerberg is worth an estimated $30 billion.

He and some college buddies at Harvard started Facebook as much as a way to keep up with relationships as anything.

Zuckerberg, 29, just wanted a way to connect the school community and Facebook was born from that desire. Who would have dreamed it would one day connect the entire world?

I’m a Facebook user but the majority of my posts deal with my little dog Opie, whose videos make people smile. I do have a lot of fun with the occasional bantering with good friends Bill Hornbuckle and Tony Grossl, a pair of witty Facebookers who can also make you LOL with some of the pictures they find.

Facebook has become a lot of things to a lot of people, from the very serious to the very non-sensical, from the disgruntled husband to the mother appealing to her son.

You can share your recipes or share your soul on Facebook.

Almost nothing is off limits.

Besides the cute videos and birthday wishes, it can be a place where you sell things (which everybody hates; I’m guilty there) or yourself (I’m referring to the politicians). Sometimes those can come in disguised ways and sometimes not so much. My guess is as the May election primary approaches our news feeds (who knew that was ever going to be something we talked about?) will have more and more of that kind of grandstanding. I’m already tired of it.

Luckily, you also have a delete button.

Many people, including my wife, want nothing to do with Facebook because of how it invades your privacy and mostly is Gossip Central. But she will come and watch an aforementioned cute video or read a post that I call her attention to on occasion.

As for having her own page, well, no way. But she would proudly tell you that Facebook clutter is not the kind of clutter she wants to deal with so she doesn’t.

We should probably all be more like her.

Nonetheless, the anniversaries of the Beatles arrival in the U.S. and Facebook’s arrival on our desktops is at least worth nothing.

Happy anniversary to a couple of events that have left an everlasting stamp on all of us.

MARK MAYNARD can be reached at mmaynard@dailyindependent.com or (606) 326-2648.

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