Like many people, I’ve become annoyed and disillusioned with Facebook of late. While my complaints about the constantly changing layouts and security loopholes I’m forever closing are fairly typical, I’ve also got a sneaking suspicion that although my mother claims to spend her days at home watching Korean dramas (no, we are not Korean; no, my mother
does not speak Korean; no, I do not know why she watches Korean dramas), she is actually working for Facebook and is behind some of the things that most bother me about the site.
My evidence? Consider if you will these examples of actual types of conversations I’ve had with my mother compared with conversations I’ve had in my head with Facebook:
Me & My Mom
Me & Facebook
|Mom: Aviance got a sundress and some strappy sandals at Nordies. You should see if they have your size.||Facebook: Aviance just played Bubble Witch Saga and Words With Friends. Play Now!|
|Me: I have never worn sundresses or strappy sandals. Why the hell would I want to see if they have my size?||Me: I have never played any games on Facebook. Why the hell would I want to play these ones?|
|Mom: Isn’t Monica Reallymeantome in your class? Why aren’t you friends with her?||Facebook: You may know Monica Reallymeantome. Add as friend?|
|Me: I hate Monica Reallymeantome. Why would I want to be friends with her?||Me: I hate Monica Reallymeantome. Why would I want to be friends with her?|
|Mom: You need to go to your piano lesson now.||Facebook: You need to switch to Timeline now.|
|Me: Piano lessons are lame. Why do I have to go?||Me: Timeline is lame. Why do I have to switch?|
|Mom: Because I’m your mother and I say so, that’s why.||Facebook: Because I’m Facebook and I say so, that’s why.|
Compelling, no? It’s occurred to me that perhaps she did learn to speak Korean (Rosetta Stone is the fastest to learn a new language) and the shows she watches aren’t really Korean dramas at all, but secret messages from Mark Zuckerberg himself telling her what fucked up changes he wants her to work on next.
The thought of my crafty, septuagenarian mother pulling the switches that control the world’s largest and most powerful social media site is disturbing, but at least it’s interesting. And that’s preferable to my second issue which is that Facebook has become so.fucking.BORING!
Now, I know some people will disagree. They’ll say it’s still a great place to keep in-touch with family and friends or re-connect with people you haven’t seen in years … and all of that is true. But what you have to understand is that I’m from an era when things were different … Facebook was fresh and fun, posts were clever and edgy, we got creative, pushed the envelope, busted balls … it was 2009 and we were on the front lines, breaking new ground, things were wide open, man! It was the best of times, it was the best of times …
But before I take you back to what it used to be like (and it’s worth waiting for, trust me), let me give you a few examples of what it’s like now. When I log into Facebook, at least 80% of my News Feed will be some combination of the following types of posts:
Inspirational – It’s like Stuart Smalley came back from the 1990s and threw-up all over Facebook. The only thing these things inspire me to do is keep scrolling.
Humor – Okay, I do like the funny, sarcastic stuff but a little moderation goes a long way. Like P.T. Barnum or Walt Disney or maybe Gypsy Rose Lee said (no one is really sure anymore so take your pick), “Always leave them wanting more.”
Political – What? You think you’re right and the other side is wrong? How unusual … this may be the first time people of differing political parties have ever disagreed.
Manipulative – I might actually re-post these (okay, I wouldn’t, but they wouldn’t piss me off as much) if they just came straight out and said “don’t be an asshole, re-post this” rather than being all manipulative and passive-aggressive and trying to make me feel guilty (which I don’t) for ignoring them.
Aside from all the picture-posts there are the Confused posters who seem to be answering the question “Whatcha doin’?” rather than “What’s on your mind?”: Staring at the wall, Eating a hotdog!, Nothing. What are you doing?; the Attention Seekers who feel the need to make people ask them what’s on their mind rather than just saying what’s on their mind: Well, that was interesting., OMG! Seriously?, I should have known better… (Attention Seekers are extra-infuriating when, after finally baiting someone into asking, reply “I can’t really talk about it.”); the Drama Queens whose lives are ruined by the slightest mishap or inconvenience: Stubbed my toe. FML!, Out of milk. FML!, Just took a shit, need to wipe my ass. FML! and the DeeJays who insist on posting links to all 127 music videos they stayed up watching on YouTube the night before.
Still not convinced? Think I sound like one of those boring, crotchety old “when I was a kid” people who can’t let go of their bygone days? Maybe I am, maybe I am … But when you see what my bygone days were like, perhaps you’ll understand. And lest you roll your eyes and assume what I’m talking about is some boring crotchety, old clap-trap because I’ve called the link simply The Best Facebook Thread EVER, I’ve decided to more accurately title it Possibly The Only Thread In Facebook History You Can Actually Masturbate To.