Facebook turned five years old today. Happy birthday old pal! In the past five years, this social utility has transformed our lives. It’s allowed us to stay connected to high school friends, communicate with people in classes, learn about campus events and countless other things, but are all of the Book’s positive qualities worth its negative ones? Is Facebook really worth the drama?
I created my Facebook account the summer before my senior year of high school. At this time, you had to have a college email address to have an account. I had taken classes at UA that summer as part of the Capstone Summer Honors program so I was able to outsmart the program. I thought I was ridiculously cool. When I created my account, Facebook was in its infant stage. Your profile pic, wall and information were all included on the same page. No tabs. No albums. No applications. I remember when Tom added the photo album feature. I thought it was weird and that no one would ever use it. Wrong. I also remember when mini-feed and news feed were added. People were outraged. We didn’t like the change. “You’ll learn to love it,” Tom told us. He was right.
The news feed feature transformed our lives. It enabled us to take stalking to a whole new level. Before the feature, we all had our favorite people to stalk: the ex-boyfriend, the ex-boyfriend’s new girlfriend, the trashy girl from high school, the weird but hot guy from class, the list could go on forever. But before news feed, we had to go searching for these people. News feed put the information in front of our eyes. It was like the forbidden fruit, and everyone took a bite. Hell, we ate the whole apple.
I saw a girl in Publix last week with a puppy. I recognized her, and the dog she got for Christmas, immediately. I had class with her brother in the fall. I started to say hi, then remembered this girl had NO CLUE who I was. I only new her because her brother had created an album over the Christmas holidays, complete with captions about the dog. He’s not even someone I regularly stalk on the Book. His album appeared in my news feed. This is creepy and weird!!
I recognize that everyone might not be as obsessed with the Book as I am. I really think I have a disorder. But seriously, hasn’t this happened to all of us once or twice? Please share your stories so I’ll feel a little more sane.