Tag Archives: Facebook

More Facebook Insights…

Every once in a while a few new observations occur to me about this social networking site.

Or maybe the observations are simply about my own life.

For example, you can organize your friends into categories.  I currently have five: people from high school, people from college, friends my husband and I met through his job in the last town we lived in, people I have met in our current town, and family.  

What is most interesting is that these categories do not overlap one iota.  Most likely none of these people will ever meet each other.  It is as though there are completely separate pockets to my life story that are totally unrelated.  There are even more pockets than these five, but I haven’t met up with anyone from the others.

I have discovered friend surfing.  If you aren’t friends with a person, they almost always have their profile set to private so you can’t see any of their information.  BUT you can see their friends!  Thusly, I can surf the friends of a friend, and from there find someone I know, or used to know, and surf their friends, ad nauseum.  It is a strange journey down a bizarre garden path where names and faces from the past bloom amongst the unfamiliar flora.  

When a certain person comes into view, it is as though the memory of them casts a light on a part of me that had been asleep since I last held them in my mind or saw them before me.  I am not completely me without all the people that have shaped my existence.

My final thought of the day is to meditate on the act of “catching up” on the last 20 years with someone who was only ever an acquaintance.  Of course any story we tell, no matter how many facts it relates, is in some way a lie due to all that we decide to leave out.  So which version do I tell to whom?  It is kind of fun to think about, really.  I can highlight a particular chapter of my crazy journey to give a certain impression.  I can turn my face slightly and appear a writer, a housewife, or a clown.

I know it’s a bit of a waste of time, commenting on someone’s status that isn’t even in my immediate vicinity just to make a witty joke or empathize with a human I once knew.  I know it’s a bit extravagant to send them good karma or pass them a drink, poke them, throw snowballs at them, or buy them a fish for their aquarium.  All kind of silly, really.

Yet, it apparently feeds me in some way since I keep going back to see what’s going on with everyone.  And occasionally, it is also food for thought.

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Filed under Life

No future for nostalgia?

A couple of years ago I wasn’t in touch with anyone from my past.  Not because I’d burned any bridges, not because there wasn’t anyone dear.  Just lost touch, moved away, got lazy, whatever.

Then when we left Oregon for North Carolina I got on Facebook and found a few people from the recent past.  But in the last few months, and most especially in the last few days, I have found a whole lot of friends and family that I haven’t spoken to in, well, not to make myself sound old, but… decades.

It is blowing my little mind.

Pretty soon everyone will have at their fingertips access to everyone they’ve ever known.  We are all starting to make our way onto the Net, that vast container that begins to encompass all of humanity, and we will be able to see how old or beautiful or successful or pitiful or broken we have all gotten.

And then what is to become of nostalgia?  When it all comes out of the past, all the old photos posted onto profiles, all the stories relived, what will become of memory?  Our entire past and present will exist on pages networked throughout cyberspace.  Instead of making up a perfect image of the good old days, I will simply enter a search and retrieve it from a database.  Instead of telling an embellished story of adventure, carefully amended for the whims of the audience I wish to entertain, the tale will be told on a blog with everyone adding comments.

I’m not complaining!  It is all new and exciting.  I am not afraid because I get to make it up as we go along, same as the next guy.  None of it has ever been done before.  No one has ever lived like this, on such a scale, inside such a network.

Does it blow your mind too?

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Filed under internet

Top Friends

This application goes in the column of evidence supporting the theory that Facebook is just a bunch of wanky elitism.  

Here’s a great way to make sure everyone who isn’t in your “Top Friends” knows that they are of a lower value!  “Hey buddy, aren’t you one of my bottom friends?”

Oooo, even better, if your significant other is one of your “friends,” you should totally make sure that your ex appears in a higher place in your “Top Friends” list, just to, you know, keep your partner guessing.  Can’t let people get too comfy.  

Do I sound bitter?  Am I one of those people who gets a pissy attitude if they aren’t the most adored human within a thousand mile radius?

Prolly.    

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Filed under society, Uncategorized

Internet Community, or Just a New Way to Play With Yourself?

What does it mean when the people you interact with most on Facebook are the people you live with?

I like that I am connected to people in my past. And by past, I mean just the last couple of years. We recently moved across the continent, and all those folks I got to know are now my “friends” on Facebook and Myspace. Whereas in my distant past those kinds of contacts would just have been lost, because no one calls or writes real letters, now I can say hey once in a while. Cute.

Gives me a way to minimize the trauma of moving to a new place, a town we aren’t going to stay in long term so there’s no point in trying to make new friends. But other than soothing my lonely ego, why bother?

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Facebook Freakout

A couple of thoughts in response to criticisms I’ve read about the latest craze.

Facebook arrives at the backlash stage.

Or maybe it really has just gone to hell the way people are complaining. But they complain in the same pompous, elitest tone that the aristocracy would use if the gardener crashed their party; “Who let HIM in? Pshaw, harumph, grumble…”

So it’s gone from the college uppercrust to the proletarian underbelly. So they’ve added a build-your-own-graveyard and a way to bitch slap your friends. I see where the critics are going with this. It’s become juvenile. People are having too much fun.

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Filed under kids, society