Who is this person anyway? Isn’t there a way to screen them? I mean I hear that you guys are gathering all our personal information so might I suggest that you use it in a useful way – allowing me somehow to screen potential friends?
There should be some options I can check off:
1. Does this person talk trash about their family routinely and in public posts?
I mean really, I want to know without having to look through all their posts because if they treat their loved ones that way – what the heck are they gonna do to me? And what if they do it on friend only posts and I have to friend them, just to find out they are jerks? That’s kinda awkward – help me out a little here, okay?
2. Does this person go from wall to wall attacking people and then come back to their own wall and lament to their buddies how they are persecuted for the truth and hated – but you know, because they love God so much they are willing to endure it…..
Okay, come on – I keep seeing on conspiracy posts that you guys track everything we do, can’t you keep track of that too? These people are like cancer, don’t you have some sort of online chemo you can apply?
3. Does this person like to friend members of the opposite sex and then accost them with personal messages telling them how attractive they are, oh and by the way, can they send some money?
As soon as a young guy tells me how hot I am, well, I begin to suspect that his intentions are less than honorable. When he asks for money, I assume he needs it for a pair of glasses.
4. Does this person’s pictures all involve feeding orphans? Oh and by the way, they need money, right now. Someone is always dying of the same disability my son has.
I tell you, there are so many people out there claiming to be feeding and giving shelter to orphans that if they were all on the up and up there would be no more orphans – but they have the money and spare time for facebook, go figure. And who knew that so many children have spina bifida and their caregivers just happened to find my profile online – what a coincidence!
5. Does this person immediately invite all their new friends to every single group and page they have? Why invite me to tupperware parties in Southeast Asia that I cannot possibly attend – leaving me with an inbox full of other people responding to that invitation who didn’t want to go either?
Seriously facebook, can’t you make groups optional, can’t I opt out so that I can’t have the dreaded “social encounters with absolute strangers” forced on me? I am on facebook because I don’t want to be around real people and being added to groups jeopardizes my introversion.
6. Does this person post scripture AND pornography?
Forgive me for possibly being over-judgmental, but that seems like a red flag to me.
7. Does this person automatically post their ministry, band or business links to the pages and threads of their new “friends”?
Isn’t there an option I can check that says, “Darnit Jim, I’m a stay at home mom, not a bulletin board!”
I propose, if you are unwilling to do this, to change the “friend” request to the following:
“click” friend request
facebook: are you sure you want to be friends with Tyler?
facebook: are you REALLY sure?
facebook: you do know what a friend is, right?
facebook: do you just want to friend her so that you can disagree with her?
facebook: because, you know, that isn’t very nice, and the world doesn’t need your opinions on everything.
“click” yes, I am aware, please send friend request.
facebook: alright, I am going to let you do this but I don’t want to turn around only to find out that you were lying.
“click” ok thanks
facebook: are you willing to give over your first born child if you are lying about this?
facebook: okay, just a min… HEY WAIT! Do you love your child or did that seem like an opportunity to rid yourself of a teenager?
“click” I really love my child, losing them would be bad for me
facebook: last chance, I really want you to think about this. Be her friend, okay?
“click” sure thing
You see, facebook — people nowadays don’t seem to understand what a friend is and well, maybe you should have an “enemy request” button so that people can either choose to go at it like rabid wolves or simply avoid each other – more preemptive and less final than a block. It kinda just says, “We are not friends so you are warned – I have no plans to be kind to you.” Friend can be in a nice shade of blue, strangers in green and mortal enemies in bright flashing red. At least that is honest and will help out with the social landscape.
Tyler Dawn Rosenquist