My opinions about social networking, sites such as facebook, myspace, and, in certain capacity, wordpress, have wavered throughout the years. I started out on facebook, back when current CEO and creator Mark Zuckerberg was still a pimply-faced college kid living in his Harvard dorm room.
It was neat when it was a college thing. That was what used to make facebook so unique. You used to have to have an active college e-mail address to join. I was less than a year removed from college and still had my Edinboro e-mail address, so I signed up and found how easily it was to keep connected with the few people I spent time with throughout my college years. And while I had my Edinboro friends, I was also living in Chapel Hill, I’d meet new people every weekend and my social network slowly began to expand to include people from UNC, NC State, and Duke as well.
Now understand, back then facebook was not the creature that it is today; it was relatively simple. You added friends to your social network, like kids who went to Edinboro, and then you could look at their profile and leave them messages. Mostly, it was a lot of fun to leave drunk messages and check out members of the opposite sex and see how hot they were or how fat they’d gotten.
Then, in the fall of 2006, facebook did what any good corporation does and completely sold out and let anyone over the age of 13 with a valid e-mail address join. Before I’d knew what hit me, anyone could join facebook and add me as a friend. My social network had spiraled out of control. I was having people from high school that I hadn’t talked to in years try to add me as their friends. People who were no more than casual acquaintances wanted to add me and look at my pictures and check out my info.
Finally, came my least favorite feature of the constantly evolving facebook monster: Status updates. Now, let me make clear that, yes, I realize that I use my status updates to whore myself out to you and shamelessly promote my blog. Yes, I post things completely void of consequence, like how good of a drummer I am or how depressed I am living up here in Northwestern Pennsylvania. What I don’t like are people who post their entire lives on facebook status updates. A few of the status updates on my own facebook at the moment read as follows:
“im goin to the gym now”
“In the shower”
“is watching TV”
As a society have we been reduced to sitting on our computers watching other people’s lives tick away one grammatical mess at a time? No wonder other countries hate us.
If I haven’t made my point clear, check out these images posted on collegehumor.com. They make my point for me.
So, in short, I suppose I’ll totally continue to take advantage of the pluses of facebook, and try and make sure that I’m contributing more than telling everyone that I’m about to go to the bathroom.
Which I am.