Tuesday, February 03, 2009

What did I do for paranoia BEFORE I joined Facebook?

So. That little interview game was fun while it lasted. Questions have been sent to Steve, Liz, Courtney, and Sauntering Soul. (Clarification: Questions for Sauntering Soul have been saved in my Drafts folder and will be sent just as soon as I track down her address. Details, details.)

Unfortunately, with that out of the way, I'm left to come up with my own blog topics again. Hmmm. Sure there's nothing else you guys want to know about me? If so, speak up and I'll do my best to oblige (maybe even within a week).

Meanwhile, let's talk about Facebook again, shall we? (3Carnations, you might as well just stop reading here and go get yourself a snack. You don't need any more reasons not to join us on "the Book," right?) I am seriously considering changing my privacy settings to prevent that little "Add as Friend" link from popping up next to my name when people search for me. I honestly didn't think this would be a problem, as I tend to assume I am entirely forgettable and somehow never considered for a moment that anyone from my past would ever even think to search for me, much less take that search one step further and decide they want to put me in their little box of online pseudo-friends. In the past four days, however, I have gotten friend requests from 1. a cousin who lives several states away and whom I have not seen nor talked to directly since I was fourteen, 2. a college friend I lost touch with several years ago, after she decided she was too busy to return letters or phone calls anymore, and 3. a friend of The Buddhist's whom I met on Saturday and who seemed rather nice and even fun until a few drinks later, when she walked in on me in the bathroom while I was peeing and told me it was a waste of my time to be dating him. Hrmm.

I have accepted the cousin request (because whatever; she's family, and you can't very well click "Ignore" on them, can you?). I even accepted the request from the long-lost college friend, admittedly at least in part because she actually included a note with her friend request, and that note said, "Holy crap are you looking good!" Flattery may not get you everywhere, but apparently it will get me to click that "Confirm" button. I haven't yet decided what to do with that third request. I suppose I will just confirm. The path of least resistance is likely best; is it not? But why did she click that "Add as friend" link? Is there a motive here, or is she just an "I'll friend anyone I've met once" sort of girl? Facebook is not the place for over-analyzers. I really ought to know this by now. My point is I doubt any of these requests would have come through if people were forced to send a message to me rather than just being able to click that "Add as friend" link. Of course, if I had my settings set as such, I wouldn't have connected with plenty of people I am happy to have in my little Friends box. Oh, the back and forth. The madness. I am starting to think Facebook was created by a subversive anti-establishment group who knew that unleashing such a beast onto society would keep us all sufficiently distracted with mind games (not to mention real games--cough; Scrabble addiction; cough) that they could quickly carry out their plan for world domination without anyone noticing.

If that's the case, those last holdouts on the Facebook front are our only hope, I suppose. 3Cs, are you still here? You'll keep an eye out for us, for the good of humanity, won't you? (If you're not going to join and play Scramble with us, it does seem it's the least you can do.)


Princess Extraordinaire said...

I understand about the Add A Friend dillemna - it can get interesting...

plumpy said...

As you know, I have graduated from social networking sites. But when I was on them, I pretty much always felt okay rejecting friend requests that didn't come with a note. And I would never send a friend request without a note. Which meant I would never try to add a friend that I didn't have something nice to say about.

I think these are very good rules to live by.

nancypearlwannabe said...

I am emailing immediately for more information.

3carnations said...

I'm still here. I'll save you all, if need be. But I will say "I told you so."

I wouldn't accept the friend request from Buddhist's friend. Just because she has seen you using the bathroom doesn't make her your friend. Did she elaborate on why she felt you were wasting your time?

Anonymous said...

I really struggle with Facebook and Myspace, which I don't have anymore, but I find it so odd and find myself sort of getting mad about people that ask me to be their friend and we are not friends. I'm not trying to be rude, but isn't it more rude to do what they are doing, which I think is trying to get to a high number of friends. Okay, I sound madder about it than I am, but you get it. I also have a huge problem with parents who have their kids on there and I know the parents have things on there that their kids should not be viewing, that was more a myspace thing. I've confirmed 2 people on facebook that I really didn't want to, but like you said, what do you do? I have 23 friends and 21 of them I know and talk to often. People who have 248? That's crazy.

Um...I'm done now. I should have used my own blog for this post. :)

Jess said...

There are so many different motivations for people to add friends, so it's hard to tell. They could be curious about your life, or trying to up their friend numbers for some reason, or genuinely want to reconnect with you, or just figure they might as well. Or not even really have a reason. Sometimes we look too deep, especially when it comes to things like Facebook.

Courtney said...

I'm going to band with 3Cs here on the non-Facebook member front. I thought I was the last remaining person on Earth not on that site, but apparently not.

Lately I feel like bloggers do their socializing on Facebook and then use their blogs to talk about their behind-the-scenes socializing on Facebook. I'm kind of waiting for the whole trend to pass. I suppose it is good blog fodder, though, so carry on.

lizgwiz said...

I don't overthink the friend requests. If I know them, I accept their "friendship." What the heck, right?

I wouldn't say facebook changed my life, or anything...but it is kind of fun keeping up on a more regular basis with some of my old college and high school friends. I'm not that good about making phone calls or sending regular emails (an actual handwritten letter? ha!), but I can do the occasional wall-writing and reading.

NGS said...

I am scared of Facebook. I haven't joined the bandwagon and all these posts I keep reading about Facebook friend etiquette are kind of steering me away from the whole thing. I've had the same email address since I as 18, so I just assume anyone who wants to get in touch with me from the way back machine can just email me! I'm old skool!!

Alice said...

in theory i'm all "PSH! this person isn't my FRIEND, they're just someone i KNOW / met / saw at a party! i'm not accepting this request!" ...but in practice i'm more "eh, it's easier to just accept it and then never think about it again."

steve said...

I've had pretty good success with adding most anyone who requests an add (with a few exceptions), secure in the knowledge that I can always remove them later if they turn out to be douchebagels.

Seems like Facebook isn't all that useful for close friends, but it's really handy for people I know and like, but don't talk to very often. And the random cousins, too.

Stefanie said...

Princess--Indeed. Though I fully recognize the biggest part of the problem is just my own overanalyzing. Also, hello! Don't think I've seen you here before. Welcome!

Plump--That does sound like a good rule... except for the part where I've sent many a friend request without a note myself. Whoops. (Also, we will get you on Facebook one of these days. You just wait.)

NPW--I hope I responded sufficiently to your queries.

3Cs--She did, to some degree... She didn't tell me much that I didn't already know, but it was the way she said it (and the fact that I'm not sure what her motive was) that bothered me.

TTC--I'm glad I'm not the only one who overanalyzes this sort of thing. :-)

Jess--You're right, I know. I just have this need to UNDERSTAND!! ;-)

Courtney--Nope; apparently there are at least three of you. And you're right: there is a lot of Facebook talk lately. I liken it to the American Idol talk or the Wii Fit talk or anything else that sort of sweeps the Internet for a while because a whole bunch of people are simultaneously caught up in it. It will subside, I assume. Be patient. :-)

Liz--What the heck indeed. I suppose your method is the best one.

NGS--Oh! Four of you! Good. All the more to defend us when they take over.

Alice--True. I don't know why I'm bothered to think of near strangers reading my status updates or seeing my photos, etc. It just feels a bit like spying, however.

Steve--I actually use Facebook more with my close friends than the long-lost ones. Apparently I would rather do my social networking online than in person? Sad. ;-)

Anonymous said...

I have such Friend issues too. I add them knowing that six months later I am going to go through and de-friend people I wasn't really friends with to begin with.....WHY???

It's crazy.

Allie said...

I'm always surprised by people from my past who seek me out to friend me. I have a different last name and I'm blonde now for goodness sake! But I figure if someone wants to read 86 gazillion status updates about my dogs, I'll let them. It's not like they're asking to come sleep on my sofa for a month or anything. :)

Sauntering Soul said...

I'm with 3C's, Plumpy, Courtney, and NGS. It all sounds too stressful.

Lara said...

Well, dude, you know my theory: everyone who friend-requests you has or has had a crush on you.