Facebook Etiquette

Just Enough:  Facebook, what can I say, I’m a slave to it just like apparently 1.06 billion other “active monthly users” – and that was an estimate in January, 2013 – I suspect the numbers have increased since then exponentially.  It’s really been a pleasure reconnecting with people I haven’t known a thing about in over 20 (25ish) years, establishing new connections with people I barely remember, and connecting with new people I meet in all walks of life every day.  I’ve found long lost friends that I’ve thought of over the years and couldn’t be happier to have reconnected with, and I’ve fostered all kinds of fantastic new friendships.

I know some of you have really embraced religion.  Some of you like to share your opinions on politics.  Others like to rant about conspiracy theories.  I know when you’ve had babies, shakeups in your relationships and when your loved ones have passed on.  I’ve shared plenty of those moments myself.

I spend countless total hours – (emphasis on “total” as I don’t even get on Facebook everyday – and I’m fucking proud of it – go outside – bask in the sunshine)  – scrolling through your status updates, vacation pics, checking out videos you’ve shared, listening to music you’ve written, reading your blog posts, etc.  I’m moved by your accomplishments, your triumphs, and your milestones.  I’m happy to be a part of my friends’ lives and my “friends’” lives.

Too Much: Facebook makes us voyeuristic and at times I see way too much.  Why?  Because you reveal way too much!  This is not a smackdown on anyone in particular but I suspect that a large percentage of 1.06 billion people could use a Facebook tutorial or just some common sense etiquette lessons.

It is not necessary to post the minutiae of every single moment of your day, every meme you read so that a string of 40 of them show up in a row, everything you ate, and every weather or news update, and the minute-by-minute recap of the TV show you’re watching.  I only say this because, it’s not that I don’t enjoy what you share, it’s just that when you share TOO MUCH you run the risk of people hiding ALL your status updates which can only result in you getting mad when nobody knows what’s going on in your life…at which point you start posting passive aggressive “I know nobody cares, but” status updates.

We all hate Mondays and we’re all excited when Friday arrives (unless you have a job that has you working on the weekends then, who knows, maybe you hate Wednesdays).  We all hate when it’s too hot and equally hate it when it’s too cold.  We all hate to be bored.  We all hate to be sick (and sharing your surgery is one thing – I think many of us are genuinely concerned – but your common cold – c’mon).  We all share very similar opinions on a lot of mundane things.

And I have absolutely no problem with you sharing your beliefs on whatever you want to talk about.  Just because I don’t weigh in, doesn’t mean I’m not watching.  But essentially everyone is watching you.  Do you realize that?  Every friend you have (unless they’ve thrown their hands in the air and blocked you) is watching you.  When you actually end up with something important to share, you’ll be overlooked (unless you’ve already been hidden) because believe it or not, we’re tired of seeing your avatar in our feed and would sorta like to know what’s going on in other people’s lives.

Knock it off: Now all the aforementioned is just Facebook 101.  What I’m going to say next comes from a personal place.  You may agree, you may not agree.  It doesn’t matter.  I’m simply sharing it because it’s my blog and it’s what I feel like spewing at this very moment.  Charitable Causes.  I am all for them.  I applaud you for running the extra mile, walking the long walk and standing up for things that matter to you.  I do, I absolutely do – I commend you all.  I’ve voted on your various things, donated time, money and support to many of your causes, and I’ve shared your causes with others.  I’ve donated countless hours of my own personal time playing benefit concerts, feeding the homeless, and crisis counseling disaster victims.  But it is my right to choose who and what I support and you do not have the right to question that and/or be offended by it.  Your fights are your fights, your paths are yours to follow – and equally fair is I have a right to believe in and support whatever it is I choose to.

I may choose to share a cause someone else is interested in because maybe I know them personally or maybe I’ve been touched by something similar in my life.  Again, it doesn’t matter, it’s my choice and just like I don’t ask you to weigh in what I should have for dinner, I don’t need your opinion on what or who I choose to support.  And when it comes to my money, I definitely am the only one with the right to proportion my hard earned cash.

Don’t Stop:  Many of you reach out personally and I encourage you to continue to do so.  Again, it’s not that I don’t care or that I’m not concerned about your well being or that of your loved ones.  But please, please, please do not be offended if I don’t respond.  The bottom line is, if I had a dime for everybody that asked me to donate to their charitable causes,  … I’d have a lot more money to donate to charitable causes.

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