General

"I despise Facebook."

In case you are fretting about not having joined the herd on Facebook…perhaps there’s little to worry about.

More and more people are beginning express how meaningless the “friends” are, how they’re tired of being used as ad-targets by everyone they accept as “friend,” and the shallowness of the experience. How can you build relationships that have meaning in such an environment?

Is it mostly an outlet for lonely, bored folks and the unrelenting sales types who prey on them? Here’s someone who has the nerve to express himself.

“I despise Facebook. This enormously successful American business describes itself as “a social utility that connects you with the people around you”. But hang on. Why on God’s earth would I need a computer to connect with the people around me? Why should my relationships be mediated through the imagination of a bunch of supergeeks in California? What was wrong with the pub?

“And does Facebook really connect people? Doesn’t it rather disconnect us, since instead of doing something enjoyable such as talking and eating and dancing and drinking with my friends, I am merely sending them little ungrammatical notes and amusing photos in cyberspace, while chained to my desk? A friend of mine recently told me that he had spent a Saturday night at home alone on Facebook, drinking at his desk. What a gloomy image. Far from connecting us, Facebook actually isolates us at our workstations.

“Facebook appeals to a kind of vanity and self-importance in us, too. If I put up a flattering picture of myself with a list of my favourite things, I can construct an artificial representation of who I am in order to get sex or approval. (“I like Facebook,” said another friend. “I got a shag out of it.”) It also encourages a disturbing competitivness around friendship: it seems that with friends today, quality counts for nothing and quantity is king. The more friends you have, the better you are. You are “popular”, in the sense much loved in American high schools. Witness the cover line on Dennis Publishing’s new Facebook magazine: “How To Double Your Friends List.”

More from the Guardian here…

Anyone else second this (rather long) motion?

About the author

Kim Klaver

8 Comments

  • I have to disagree on this one. I’ve met some pretty great people on facebook, myspace, and the internet in general.

    The writer says:

    “instead of doing something enjoyable such as talking and eating and dancing and drinking with my friends”

    HHHMMM…I don’t drink, so that leaves “pubs” out.

    I go to lunch with my friends locally, but certainly can’t meet for lunch with my wonderful friend Katie in Washington state or my friend Cynthia in Texas or my friend Lisa in Iowa…you get the picture. The internet and the telephone has brought us all together.

    So there are a few nitwits on the social networking sites. Just like we can’t use the “bad ones” as an excuse to not do network marketing anymore, we can’t use the “bad ones” to keep us away from things that may be otherwise great.

    Start focusing on the positive instead of the negative and see how fast your business grows.

    ~Roxanne~

  • Heck no!

    What was described in the article has been a problem since the days of the internet, with it’s newsgroups, chatrooms, and email lists. It’s not Facebook specific.

    The internet connects us in one sense, and it isolates us in another sense.

    You can find people just like you around the globe (great!), and you can easily ignore and have no need for your neighbors (bad!).

    Personally, I love Facebook.

    It has helped me stay in touch with people scattered all over the country (and planet).

    It has helped me better stay in touch with the people that live within a 30 mile radius of me.

    I’ve made new friends through Facebook.

    Through Facebook, we were alerted to some urgent needs of a seriously depressed college student (and friend of the family) who needed immediate intervention (and received it).

    So, yeah, you don’t need Facebook.

    But if you use it wisely, it is an incredibly powerful tool.

    Walter Reade (from Wisconsin)

  • Facebook…

    Oh Facebook…

    I don’t know what I would do without it.

    I have met some of the most amazing people on there.

    People…where I can pick up the phone right now, get them on the phone, and pick up right where we left off.

    What facebook does is make it easier to meet people with your SPECIFIC INTERESTS.

    Are there bad apples on there….Of course! You have bad apples in any and all industries!

    EG..If you are a roller coaster nut (like me), and want to meet other people who love roller coasters within 30 miles from you facebook can help you do that.

    Or if you are a young entrepreneur, and want to meet and network with other young entrepreneurs…facebook can help you do that too.

    I talk a lot about facebook on my blog by sharing specific networking stories I have had using the social network. I show you what I have done, and how to be effective when creating relationships on the network.

    Here is the address link…Enjoy!
    http//www.NetworkingEffectively.com

  • Dear Kim,

    I second this motion.

    Your blog is about as social as I have gotten on the Internet.

    I had wondered about these social networks and I am glad you posted this link. How many took the time to read the entire article by the “Guardian” like I did? Very interesting and thanks for the heads up.

    Yes it obviously helps people connect from all around our world. This is not the benefit enticing venture capitalists and some of the wealthiest in the world to pour money into Facebook by the 10’s of millions. Pardon the analogy, but it’s the best I can conjure up right now. It is like trying on clothes in a dressing room with a hidden video camera feeding to every major brand marketer in the world and many intelligence groups, also.

    Folks complain about spam and their precious privacy being violated by telemarketers. If what the “Guardian” shares is even partly correct, you might as well publish nude photos of yourself. They would only be skin deep and the crafters of Facebook want what’s in your brain and heart; your life history that can be sold to companies to better target you with their advertising.

    Social network or global data farm? Fertilizer for the roots of disingenuousness in our marketing culture. If Facebook is vital to your happiness, then quit complaining about spam and other forms of solicitation, because you have painted a target on yourself with permanent ink.

    Perhaps you will take the time to read the whole article, now?

    Faceless,
    Tom Doiron

  • I agree with all above … especially BlogBunny, Everything is what you make of it.

    Remember the days of ‘penpals’ (we oldies will remember) … you would find someone’s name in a magazine from another country and you would send them a letter. It would take generally 2-3 months to get a response, yet we wrote back and forth for years.

    Today, we have electronic pen pals. I have them in different countries and I wouldn’t trade my … what shall we call them … cypals? for all the tea in China.

    I am very social, I do go out with my friends, etc., etc. But when I am “chained to my desk” it’s a welcome interruption when one of my friends in another country sends me a message or a beautiful comment.

    Venetta
    A)Present Business – No Scam
    1)(From Kim Klaver’s New School methods):
    Well, let me tell you what we do and you can call it what you want.
    We market products to consumers — people like you and me — and we set them up in business to do the same thing. That’s how the company expands and that’s why they pay us. Do you think you could do something like that if we showed you how?
    (Keep in mind, most importantly here, WE’RE looking for people for whom it’s the right thing for them to be doing NOW).
    or
    I build networks of people who use/market Aloe Vera products. And, sometimes I add … FLP pays us for using their products and finding other customers who want to use their products.
    (Note: FLP DOES pay very well for customers … so for my company this is true.)

    2)Keep from being WI liars:
    Just tell the truth.
    Personally, I have several hurdles that keep me in the slow lane with my business. When I DO make a presentation and someone asks “How long have you been in the business and how much money are you making,”
    first I lol and say, “FLP is the opportunity. What I do and what you do could be light years apart. I am slowly building the business for retirement. You might want to be a turbo and make gangster money. The beauty of NM companies is whether you want to make an extra 100 a month or whether you want to make gangster money, the company has training materials that will help YOU accomplish YOUR goals.

    Venetta
    http://www.venetta.myflpbiz.com

  • I have never been a fan of so called Social Networking Sites. Nothing replaces live in person interaction. Nothing. Even live real time video conferencing doesn’t come close. There are too many elements left out of the exchange. Things such as touch, smell, and sharing a common environment. “Hot enough for ya?”

    Now, lets drop down to written text. (Let’s assume I’ve posted a real pic of myself so you at least know my gender and appearance.) No vocal inflections. No gestures. No volume change. No facial expressions. No body language. Nothing except these words on a screen. These words can convey information, but that’s about it. You can read my words. You can learn some of my opinions and values. You can read about some of my experiences. You can learn much about, but, you cannot truly know me.

    The art of conversation is dieing.

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