Friends or Entourage?


Facebook
: a great way to stay in touch with the people you love. But social networking has a deceptive touch.

Most people have Facebook accounts and the Friends List included with them. (And even if you don’t have a Facebook, you’ve probably heard of this anyway.) If you’re out of this loop, here’s a lesson on becoming friends on Facebook:

  • Find someone you know, someone who knows someone you know, someone who shares your interests, someone who looks interesting, etc.
  • Click on their name, and in the next dialog box, click “Add as Friend” to send them a “friend request.”
  • If they accept your request, you’ll get a notification saying, “John Smith has accepted your friend request.”
  • Congratulations! You are now friends forever!

Don’t you wish relationships were this easy to start and maintain outside the Net?

That’s the superficiality of Facebook. Your “friends” could be the super fan who faints at your concerts, the girl in your school you’ve never met (but who requested you because you attend the same school), a random person in Brazil who thinks you have a cutest smile, or the man who’s trying to get into the Guinness Book of World Records for the longest Friends List. Do those connections really mean anything?

How many “friends” do you have? Ten? Fifty? Five hundred? Well, aren’t you a star? But how many of them talk to you more than once a month? What are your conversations about? How many of your “friends” know you, instead of knowing about you? Have you met them all in person? Most importantly, how many of them truly love you?

The list shrinks, doesn’t it? Maybe ten people out of a thousand. The other 990 rot on your Friends page; they’re nothing more than your entourage. You may even have forgotten each other.

So, tell me. Who are your real friends?

Twitter…I Don’t Get it

Basically, it’s like constantly updating your Facebook status, which some people do anyway. So you could say:

Jane Doe is eating breakfast.

Then, ten minutes later:

Jane Doe has finished eating breakfast and is headed to the gym.

And people “follow” you? And everyone thinks Facebook is stalker paradise now!

Why would you want anyone watching you that closely? I thought we called that spying. I could understand if it were someone very close to you, like a spouse or a child, but isn’t that what cell phones are for? “Honey, I’m about to go to the grocery store. What do you want for dinner?”

Is privacy dead? I agree that too much privacy is a negative thing, but too much transparency can be just as harmful. And between Twitter, Facebook, and Myspace, we’re all walking windows now!