[Announcer’s Voice]: … And now, for the continuation of yesterday’s post. No Disrespect is sitting at her computer still pontificating on how her “friendships” have changed in the age of social media. Foreshadowing commences…
For the record, I love you guys. In a very platonic way, of course. But if we are “friends” on Facebook… I’m sorry, but I just can’t do it anymore… I’m slowly and painfully breaking up with 90% of you.
Social NetworkING has made us closer… in an illusory way. Thanks to Facebook and Twitter, I have reconnected with high school, college and old work comrades, some several thousand miles away. (Whether we were buddies when we actually knew each other in person is debatable… I was nerdiness and social awkwardness personified in my teens and 20s…) In any case, it’s nice to see what my “friends” from a previous life are up to these days. It’s also nice to read up on what some of my closer friends and acquaintances do with their lives, when I’m not able or willing to honor them with my regal presence (or vice versa).
Remarkably, though… by taking our relationship online – frankly, most of you are boring me. Pictures of people’s vacations/weekends around town, 3,000 weather reports from all over the country, and the cute things kids say rolls up my status feed every few seconds. (In 140 words or less, of course.)
What, pray tell, have I *really* learned from you guys? The answer is: not bloody much. Let us explore the ways:
[Ed note: And yes, you know who you are…]
- Most of you are too busy to pick up the phone, but you have more than enough time to write witty one-liners most of the day and night;
- You had blueberry waffles for breakfast this morning (Would you tell me, in excruciating detail, every meal you ate this week over the phone? So why must you post it on Facebook then?!?!???);
- You hate work, and tell me so hourly, from 9-5;
- You love your spouse/kids/dog SO MUCH that you must write about them in flowing verse several times daily. (I’m not jealous, seriously. Virtual PDA just isn’t attractive. I wrinkle my nose at it in “real life” too.);
- You have a pet cause for the next hour. Won’t I please show my support by re-posting your overwrought status update? Otherwise, screw me. I’m unpatriotic… I’ll have bad luck for the next seven years. And I’ll subsequently stub my toe on my coffee table to boot.
“So, No Disrespect???,” you say, “I can’t be a comedian 24/7. ” Fair enough. (And for the record, my Facebook updates won’t win any innovation awards either.)
On the other extreme, living part of your life electronically comes at a price… you should fully expect that all of your ‘friends’ (that you don’t block) read your lousy status updates, links and ‘likes’… You are “stalked” to the extent of what you throw up there. This scares the bejesus out of me, frankly… and I am super careful about what I promote to the world online. But some of you… well, your narcissism, bravado (and frankly, stupidity) has taken over, and if we are logged in at the same time… I learn way too much about you just by logging into my homepage.
When you state online that you purposely didn’t wash your hands after peeing; you click to “like” BDSM; or you accidentally post a picture of your hoo-ha that was meant to be sent to your boyfriend… and it shows up on all of your friends’ news feeds (sadly, all true stories of my FB experience, thanks to three different people), you have only yourself to blame when every single last one of us takes one big virtual step backwards. And ya, de-friend you too.
Oversharing your mundane and/or very private life electronically makes it difficult to like you electronically or personally. Facebook/Twitter/Google+/the next one in line might actually be violating… no DETERIORATING my friendships(!)
The most astounding thing is, I KNOW that 99.9% of my friends are more interesting than their status updates. Stop it, people! Be creative and tell me something mindblowing that I DON’T KNOW. (Funny is good too.) And I just may respond to you. And let’s see each other once in awhile… I like inflection and feeling more than translated 1’s and o’s.
… And who knows, we may just actually become real “friends(!)”