The Real Social Network

A few days ago I woke up to a text from a friend.

“Why haven’t you RSVPD Cher!?” He exclaimed.

“…to what?” I replied, perplexed.

It was about a play he was appearing in – for which I had already bought two tickets, had made dinner plans before AND for which I had already verbally RSVP’d to him.  And all this (gasp) without even checking my Facebook  invitations.  That was the problem: my failure to respond to a Facebook invitation raised a call for alarm.

This situation along with the recent uproar over the new layout got me thinking.  Are we so reliant on a social website that we get distressed over changes to our online profiles or question our friends’ commitments just because they haven’t responded to a mass invitation?

Some friends have expressed frustration when people don’t respond to posts on their walls or comment on links they share on other friends’ profiles.  And each time I hear that complaint (through a Facebook message of course), I think “Maybe that’s because those people have lives.”  You know, outside that little laptop you carry around, there is a world waiting to be explored.  But don’t stretch yourself. Start with a walk around the block and see if that doesn’t overwhelm you, okay?

I’m not knocking Facebook; don’t get me wrong.  I don’t see myself ever deleting my profile –I use it primarily to market my writing.  Yep, I’m that asshole who lets you know when I have a show coming up or a sketch on T.V. or an article published.  (Chances are that’s why you’re reading this.)  Just keep looking for my status updates with pleads to “Come to my show!  Look at me! Look at me!  Come to my show!”  Some use the site as a primary social device, and hey that’s gravy, too.  But if you’re getting pissed about the new changes the Facebook team has implemented, keep in mind that it’s a FREE service that you could very well stop using.

If you have a life, you may not have heard about these changes – A Timeline feature that allows users to share more about themselves through dated scrapbooks and activity logs that are open to more detail than a status update or note and of course another change in the page layout.  Users have cried “Blasphemy!  Chaos!  How dare they make changes to a service that is free!?”

Listen dudes, Mr. Zuckerberg can do whatever the hell he wants.  After all, he is running a business that offers a free service but still manages to make a hefty, hefty profit.  We shouldn’t be harassing him, rather only praising him for being so savvy.  And, if you’re unhappy with it, stop checking it every fucking ten minutes.  You know that blackberry you’re holding right now?  The one that you’re reading this article on?  That little thing has another cool feature – it’s called the “call” app.  You don’t even need to download any program to use it. How about that?

If the new changes they drive the public away from the site, that can have nothing but positive repercussions.  Maybe then we can all digress a bit as a society and return to the simpler days of e-mails and phone calls from land lines.  And by the way, feel free to like this article on Facebook.  And message me with your praise.  And comment on the link I share in my status.  But don’t be offended if I don’t comment on your comment.

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