I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again. Facebook is amazing. Today I found a girl (well she’s a woman but for some reason it feels weird to say that) who I haven’t seen in 20 years. We met when I was I was in college. She had a baby son who I guess must be about 21 years old now?! We hung-out a lot for awhile and then I’m not even sure how or why, we lost touch. I do remember that we were together when we got mugged at gunpoint in Detroit but that’s a story for another day and we had a lot of fun times too.
I have to admit, I didn’t actually find her, my best friend did. You’ve heard me say before that I have a terrible memory, so my best friend is my memory. She remembered the girl’s last name.
There has been a lot of talk about how social networking on the internet is all surface, that you are not really connecting with people, but I disagree. I have shared pictures of my beautiful son and seen pictures that friends wanted to share, I have shared and received news, received and given advice, and just joked around. I suppose, yes, there are a lot of people out there that represent themselves dishonestly, especially if you are on dating sites, but at this point I am not interested in friending people that I don’t already know (or used to know) in person. What I really like about Facebook is how you can reconnect with people that you may never have found otherwise.
There are different ways you can use these sites. If you have 1000 friends and most aren’t people who you actually know, that seems silly, at least to me. I never friend someone unless I want to communicate with them, mostly on at least a semi-regular basis. I don’t like it when someone friends me and then they never attempt to communicate with me. I am really annoyed by people who never update their status. At some point I am going to un-friend those folks.
I do think that Facebook can be dangerous. I have all of my privacy settings set so that only my friends can see my information but I remember when I was a teenager I generally felt invincible and I’m sure I would have been perfectly fine with anyone and everyone seeing my info. So how is this dangerous? People can find out where you live, where you are, where you work, your family’s names…you name it, and these days people can use information in all kinds of scary ways. Also, it seems a lot of young people do feel they actually know their Facebook “friends” even if they’ve never actually met and this can be risky because they may overshare and put themselves in a vulnerable position.
I will say that I hate all that mafia, farm, send virtual (worse than plastic) flowers crap. Now that literally is nothing! It takes no skill, it’s not real. I have no understanding of why people would enjoy participating in that crap and I wish it wouldn’t show-up on my feed. I just don’t get it. Only communications and sharing please.
Anyway, maybe I had better go see that Facebook movie that just came out, because I am hooked. Who will I find or who will find me next?