Why My Friends And People I Follow Are the Coolest

There’s a trend these days that is at severe risk of causing my eyeballs to actually roll out of my head and drop on the ground, and the ground is really dirty. First-Year Social Media Philosophers. Holier than thowitter.

Those who say having 500 facebook friends is not the same as having real friends. Those who say your digital persona (on FB specifically) is not your real persona. Those who say getting notifications about Candy Crush is boring.
Yeah. No duh-doy. There is literally no one who disagrees with you.

Screen Shot 2014-05-14 at 2.06.42 PM People were too hard on Clippy, the Microsoft paperclip who popped up and told people things they should already know. If I could code, I’d make an extension where whenever someone super deep told me getting notifications for Candy Crush was boring, I’d pop up with a wacky shrug and a word balloon saying, “Did you know you can turn off those notifications? Did you know you can mute people who only Instagram their breakfast? Did you know there’s not a gun to your head to add every single person you’ve ever passed on the street?”

Every time Medium.com or Forbes or TechCrunch posts the latest hip dude announcing they’re leaving social media for good this time, I always wonder if these people even bother to use the features in place to help them with literally this very issue?

Wah, I have too many friends.
Okay, unfollow them?

Wah, I can’t unfriend this person whose views I don’t agree with because they’re family and they will get butthurt.
Okay, unsubscribe from their news feed, and they’ll never know?

Wah, everyone on my twitter feed is so boring.
Okay, FOLLOW MORE INTERESTING PEOPLE. YOU ARE LITERALLY THE CAPTAIN OF THIS SHIP.

What is wrong with these people? How entitled are they to insist that their particular feed that THEY have created is not interesting enough for them, so they’re leaving forever?

And why can you not swing a dead lolcat around the Internet without finding these types of articles (with thousands of shares on FB, btw) as if they were the first to discover they could leave?

This one about Twitter was particularly infuriating because there is absolutely NO reason to not follow ONLY people you worship. It’s asymmetrical, unlike facebook, meaning you can get news from Lady Gaga, Anderson Cooper, Sarah Palin without that person having to follow you back. You deleted your whole twitter feed? That YOU curated? Do you want a PRIZE? I took out the trash this morning, better write an article about the pros and cons of flies in my house.

I have also (because I understand how products work?) culled my friends list. I’m such a hipster, I did it even before tech articles told me I could! I identified posts that made me feel sad, and I said, “I don’t want to follow this person who makes me feel sad anymore.” So I didn’t! And now I have an awesome curated feed of content that is relevant to my interests!

I don’t see too many baby pictures. I love seeing pictures of my friends and family being happy. I am not “lazy” by liking those pictures and never picking up a phone. I’m capable of both! I’m connected in a way I couldn’t have been in past years, and I’m constantly amazed and thankful that it exists.

I don’t see too many breakfast pictures. I love seeing people’s breakfast! It looks really good! Now I’m hungry!

I don’t see too many people bragging about getting married. Even before I was married, aren’t you guys my friends? And if I do feel jealous, wouldn’t I anyway when you told me in real life? Just because I see it on a screen doesn’t change anything. And, deeper than that, aren’t people allowed to be happy anymore? Where do you draw the line? Should I not share news about getting a new job just because someone else might not like their job? If you can’t be objectively happy for me about something that makes me happy, why are we friends?

I don’t see how this isn’t a fundamental known by everyone, but apparently it’s not.

Last caveat, I’m not trying to cheerlead. If facebook and twitter aren’t your thing, cool. Basketball isn’t mine. No one is forcing you to be on them. But don’t pretend your self-imposed FB breaks make you a better person than I am just because I get value from the platform.

It strikes me as the same argument that devices are causing us to be more disconnected from each other than we were in the “good old days.”

Screen Shot 2014-05-14 at 2.46.29 PM

This image has been floating around (not sure the original poster) with the tagline: “Same as it ever was.” Indeed.

I guess the good old days where when we stared into the campfire waiting for a drumstick of wooly mammoth meat, and we finally got to really connect with people.

“Ugh, can you BELIEVE Grassina had the NERVE to scratch into the cave wall that she’s getting dragged by the hair by RockSlide Jr. to join his clan? It’s like, when’s it gonna be BamBam’s turn, you know?”