DAY 4- time to get back to the real world?

According to there were about 500 million active users of facebook in june 2010. Facebook claims that 50% of its active users log on to Facebook any given day, and that the average user has about 130 friends. According to facebook, users in total spend over 700 billion minutes per month in the social network.

There´s barely a day going by without me checin´in to hotel facebook. It´s a popular place to be, and somehow the place to visit if you want to stay updated. Sometimes it feel a little bit like life actually takes place on facebook, and even though updates like "sitting on loo, not doing anything yet" with a follow-up" oh, there it weent" isn´t too common anymore, it seams like people often have an urge to share whatever is going on. For everyone to see.
I too used to to update on a reguar basis. Back when facebook was all new and exciting. 
I definitely wouldn´t update about my doings on the toilet, or when I went to bed at night, but I would update like "having a good day" and so on. Like anybody really cared. Off course people would push the "like it" button from time to time regarding my update, but then again, really? did they care? Do we care? 
Or is it just so that we´re so hungry for news, and so curious about what´s going on with everyone else that we just need to stay continually updated. So that we can stay in total control.. sort off. Not missing out on anybodys birthdays, a pary or even worse, a funeral?

A while back an acquaintance of mine comitted suicide. He had an account on facebook. Thank God (....!) otherwise we wouldn´t all have been able to know about it right away. 
Within hours of his sad decision to end his life, his passing were out there for the wourld to see. The news spread like fire in a haystack, for this was no ordinary update. People commented- willingly- and there was no end to all the sadness. Even people who didn´t really know him, myself included, suddenly had a need to express how sad and shocking we found the news about his passing.
And for what? Why did we all have feel the urge to post something about his tragic death? was it really in the attemt to honor him that we all wrote " rest in peace dear friend" or was it simply a way to make ourselfs look more interesting in the eyes of those who didn´t know yet?
Sad news travels fast. Too fast sometimes. His brother found out via facebook. After what I understand he was vacationing abroad when he "finally" checked in to the social network. It so happens that it is often easier and cheaper to get online than it is having your phone turned on at all times...
Sad. What a way to find out. In a hotel lobby, or maybe at a coffe shop surrounded by strangers, purhaps without anyone at all to catch him in his fall. Sad.
And it happens all the time. That people get served horific news via Facebook. 
It actually happens so frequently that multiple newspapers have written stories about it, urging facebookusers to at least wait 24 hours before they share their grief in the popular webplace.This, so that the authorities have the opportunity to present the news to relatives in an properly and orderly manner before relatives find out via friends on Facebook.

Living in the era of facebook and other social networks,  it is way to easy to get hooked. I´m hooked. No doubt about it. I feel the need to stay updated. Information is gold, and who would ever want to be the last person to know about ... anything? And not just that, but not being on facebook also means not being invited to arrangements, parties and so on. Because, who would actually take the trouble of texting anymore, or calling, or God forbid, sending an actual invite by mail? 
Somehow it does get to me though, like when over 60 of my "friends" remembers me on my birhtday. It makes me feel important for a while. It makes me feel like a success. And that what scares me so much about the whole facebook business. Is it really so that we measure our success in life by our current amount of friends on Facebook? 
You have a lot of friends, you´re thereby popular, and popularity equals success?
Then again, maybe that´s why it works so well. Maybe that´s why millions have joined. You show the world how many "friends" you have and you´re considered a successful person?
And who wouldn´t want to be? Or at least to be considered as one.  

I´m not saying that facebook is all bad. I like to read about what´s going on with my friends, I like to be invited to parties, and I like it when people suddenly write on my wall, or poke me- to show me that they care. I like to be able to express my thoughts and feelings from time to time, and to get the attention I get when I state something really cool in others eyes. I´m just thinking that it´s getting to have to much power. Facebook. And I´m 30. How much power does it have in the lives of fifteenyear olds?

I have, while writing this, 432 active friends on facebook. That´s a lot of friends. Yet, for some odd reason, I neither feel especially popular or successful. To tell the truth, sometimes I feel quite lonely. How can that be? With so many "friends"?
For me, a thought of maybe quitting this whole facebook thing has started to take shape. I just need to kill off my need to be updated all the time, and trust that my friends in the real world would tell me when something out of the ordinary takes place. Making sure that I would be there, or know about it- because they truly love me.

1 comment:

  1. Coucou dear friend. Facebook or no facebook, I know that you are a friend for life. If you want me to send you a poke I will...or I can just smile everytime I think about you.... :)


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