It can get ugly on Facebook. Verbal sparing with friends of friends. Bitch slaps through cyber-space. Unfriending the ultimate betrayal. U-G-L-Y.
I love Facebook. I am one of those annoying people who updates my status twice a day, and I am rarely witty. "Off to the grocery store!" "Eating a bagel! Yummy!" But it helps me to feel connected with friends that are far away, and to get to know new acquaintances a little better. And lets be honest who doesn't love sneaking a peek at the photos of your old high school "friends"? Who got fat? Who lost their looks? Dang! You know she got a boob job. It's like going to a high-school reunion without having to actually show up.
But then there is the down side of the so called social networking sight. The political posts. The TMI posts. And the fights. I have in fact been involved in a couple of these online arguments myself. The first tiff involved a guy from high school who I had no business being "friends" with in the first place because well, we never were friends. Yet he felt the need to comment on a post in which I had mentioned of all things breastfeeding. It was a very benign comment by the way. The mere mention of breastfeeding made the poor fellow's ears burn. He is a delicate flower I suppose. He responded saying that he is offended by open displays of breastfeeding and apparently the mere mentioning of the foul behavior bothered him. I let the comment slide, but some of my facebook friends, including my mother and brother in-law responded, and a facebook war ensued. Words like racist, ignorant and childish were used. The ultimate result... the dude defriended me. But I wanted to defriend him first. No fair!
More recently, I commented on a friend's post about her baby who refuses to sleep. I told her that the cry-it-out method worked well for me. Well another individual, who is not my friend, decided to publicly criticize my parenting choices. She basically told everyone that the thought of making a child cry themselves into exhaustion, forcing the baby to "pass out" made her very uncomfortable. Good lord, the way she put it, I am basically an abusive monster of a mama. Well I took the higher road, and responded with a simple "it worked for me!" and let it go. I wanted to give her a piece of my mind for humiliating me on facebook, but instead... I am venting my frustrations to you, my lucky readers.
There have been other arguments as well, I got in a disagreement with a stranger about a ridiculous video a mutual friend had posted. The presentation claimed that Obama was a Muslim, and it basically insinuated that being a Muslim was equivalent to devil worshipping. I didn't like the video, the stranger disagreed, it wasn't pretty.
So I suppose Facebook puts us in contact with people we might not otherwise come across, which isn't necessarily a bad thing. Perhaps people get a little more bold when in email land, and we aren't as polite as we should be. It is a small price to pay for the privilege of easily telling 160 people the most minute details of my life and in turn, learning what my friends are cooking for dinner half way around the world....