Saturday, March 21, 2009

My new FB friend policy

I'm interested in connecting with people that are really my friends. People I would actually enjoy having a beer with and who would enjoy having one with me (if they liked beer). I like meeting new people on FB when I can enrich myself (and hopefully them) by sharing ideas and interests. I have met some people on FB, like the great Craig DeLarge, that I consider friends because of the connection we've made online. For this reason I value FB a lot.

However, FB has a dark and unseemly side. One that devalues the very concept of friendship. One that devalues ideas by turning everything into often crude soundbites. (I do enjoy crude soundbites, but I don't want to live in a world where they are the sole means of communication.) I am not interested in helping you with your narcissistic quest to have as many FB "friends" as possible. I am not interested in helping you convince yourself that you're important because lots of people seem to care about what you have to say. I might be interested in helping you with your business networking, but not on FB. Find me on LinkedIn and we'll see.

So, effective one week from now, I am cleaning up my friend list. I would rather have one good FB friend than 1000 fake ones. I will be maintaining people on my friend list if they are true friends in the offline world, if they add to the value of my life by sharing ideas with me, if they make me think, if they seem to care about me somehow and make me care about them, and so on in this spirit.

Anyone who does not evidence the qualities of friendship with me or the promise of becoming one in the future, is not going to remain on my FB list. Hopefully no hard feelings folks. But I find it rather offensive to use the sacred word "friend" to describe someone who isn't.

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