Monday, June 10, 2013

Facebook ... a love/hate relationship

After my last post Why I think it is okay to hate autism ... my numbers have jumped.  I wish I had thought to make a note of things like how many followers I had (I think it used to be 12 and now it is 17) or how many likes I have on my Facebook page (I think it used to be about 45 and now it is 73) but for someone who is really doing this blog for fun, I have
never paid super close attention.  Still it was a very gratifying weekend in blogland.

So now that I have all these people that are interested in autism, this blog entry has almost nothing to do with autism.  This is all about my love/hate relationship with Facebook.

I have been on Facebook as myself for about 6 years.  Some of my sons' teachers were actually the first to invite me -- being younger than myself they were aware of Facebook and active on Facebook long before most of my peers.  

But eventually even middle aged dogs learn new tricks and so I have been able to reconnect with so many people from my past -- college, high school, even all the way back to grade school -- and it has been a blast.  I have made friends in my hobby field that I never would have been able to find if it hadn't been for the wonder of Facebook.  I have a huge network of special needs parents that really "get" it when I post some of the antics of my boyz.  I feel like I have a much closer relationship with my nieces than I did pre-Facebook.  And I absolutely love the sharing of humor on Facebook rather than the e-mail forwards of 10 years ago.
This is obviously the "Love" portion of the relationship.

So where does the "Hate" portion come in?

1.  Politics.  In my opinion, Facebook should be a "politics free" zone.  I am a rather moderate person when it comes to politics.  I tend to get both sides.  But I have never understood why people have to be so extreme when it comes to their political opinions on FB.  Just because someone voted the other way, does not make them "an idiot" or worse.  Before the last American presidential election, I had about 10 people completely blocked.  Sigh.

2.  The rudeness.  I have a friend who is an atheist that always makes fun of a mutual friend's religious posts.  Can't we just accept our differences?  It isn't like the mutual friend is trying to convert the atheist.  She is just expressing her views in a factual and usually positive way.

3.  The triviality.  Absolutely no one cares that you are doing laundry.  And only a few people care about your hobbies, what you made for dinner, how long you worked out or what level you reached in Candy Crush Saga.  I set up a separate page for my main hobby and of course one for this blog.  If that is something they are interested in, they can like it and find out all they want. 

4.  The stalkers.  I am sort of an open person.  I try to go for at least a couple of posts a week.  There are some people that I have no idea what is going on in their lives and yet they regularly comment on my posts so I know they are on Facebook.  I found out that one friend's child got married when she posted the pictures.  She wasn't so close that I expected an invitation, but this was big news and I wished I had known.  I didn't even know her daughter was dating anyone!  

5.  The people who don't edit.  Last year, I had one person share about two dozen pictures from her daughter's prom - individually.  Yep, each one got loaded one at a time over about an hour.  Keep in mind that there are a lot of prom pictures in April and May.  The girl was on court and cute as a bug, but I really didn't want all those pictures hogging my feed.  Then there are the people who post 200 pictures from a vacation.  Really?  Can't you pick the highlights and put the rest in your family photo album?  And I hate to break it to some of you, but your camera phone has lousy resolution and I can't tell if that is your son or your daughter -- much less where they are and what they are doing!  And I won't even mention the atrocious spelling or grammar.

6.  The ones who don't get it but still have to put in their 2 cents -- every time.  I post about Alan climbing the shelves in the basement and breaking them and how I have to mount all the furniture to the walls and someone posts that her grandson climbs as well.  Yes, and he is a 30 lb. two year old who will most likely outgrow it.  I have a 160 lb. 14 year old who has broken the bottom shelf of every single bookshelf in our basement.  It just isn't the same.

7.  The obscure posters.  "Most of you know I am going through a horrible time now."  (How are we supposed to know this?  Your last four posts have been about your adorable grand-kids.)  "Some people are so mean."  (Well, duh, but if you want sympathy, you need to tell us what happened.)  

8.  Those who don't recognize sarcasm.  No I did not really get questioned by the police about what I was burying in the backyard.  And if I had I would have the sense not to post it on Facebook!

You might be surprised to see that I didn't include the gamers in the hate column.  First off, I used to love all the games and I still play Words with Friends most days.  I try not to post so everyone can see that I had lousy letters and my last word played was "tie" for 5 points but if I goof, I figure that is something easily blocked.  So rather than make ranting posts for people to "stop sending me all these game requests" I just block the person or the game or both and move on.

And now I'm off to check my Facebook pages ...


  1. Love it! Agree with it all! And probably guilty of doing a few if the "hate" ones at some point in time!
    One of my "hates" are the people who have 1,438 friends who want to friend me and I don't know them: the friend collector. That's not social networking, that's competing to see who has the most "friends".

  2. I was nodding my head in agreement with every one! I can add to the list too. I don't like people who post a picture of their child every two seconds. Or people who post pictures of the food they are eating at a restaurant. I think both go in your category of "trivial" or "NO ONE CARES!"

  3. I admit that I post about my passions -- my kids and my involvement with veterans and the POW/MIA issue -- a lot. I don't think there is anything else interesting about me. :) I do not do food posts and I stopped with the daily task thing a long time ago, with rare occasion (like a photo of the mountain of laundry I should be ironing instead of being on Facebook).

    The stalker thing, oh, I know. People I know in real life, friends from church (but whom I do not talk to outside of church), commenting about a photo or a status. They never put anything on Facebook. I suppose I should be flattered that they do say something in real life, but it is a bit creepy. I also have a guy, whom I dated for a few months fifteen years ago, keep creating new accounts so he can contact me. Why does he create new accounts? I block the old ones. He thinks my blocking him I still care about him. Don't flatter yourself, dude.

    I am pretty sure I blogged about good v bad of Facebook on my personal blog. If I haven't, I am inspired to do so myself now. :)

  4. OK, that guy sounds seriously creepy. Yikes. In fairness to all the foodies, I do think it is kind of fun to see something exotic (when a friend went to the local Greek festival and posted all the mounds of Baklava) and I think a photo of Mt. Laundry would be great. Mainly I do my kids and my cat. I guess I need to blog about him next ...

  5. I was never brave enough to try Facebook! My husband does. I just haven't. I guess I never knew what I was missing! I only do Google plus because of my blogs. Thanks for the funny post. I have heard so many of my friends rant about all of the above too. :) Maybe its time for me to join in the fun!

  6. Oh dear... guess it's a good thing I'm off fb. I'd probably make you mad L'il Sis by posting something dumb. :(

    1. Absolutely not. You were more like Patti -- a stalker!

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