Posted by: Mark Nielsen | January 2, 2012

Facebooking: It’s All Getting Away From Me, I’m Afraid

I used to actually know my friends.

I suppose I still do, but I certainly don’t know all my Friends.

Know what I mean?

When I first started on Facebook,

Facebook profile shown in 2007

Facebook layout as of 2007 -Image via Wikipedia

Remember this?

…as a refugee from bad old MySpace, I enjoyed catching up with old classmates and friends, or discovering a few new ones based on common interests 0r Friends in common. I still do that, of course. Just not as much as I used to.

For one thing, Facebook has kept changing rather rapidly, and I think so have I –both as a person and as a Facebook user.

I used to casually “troll” for Facebook Friends by going to an existing Friend’s friend list to see if they’d had contact with somebody I knew or was looking for. But now, Facebook itself has quickly become much more expansive in defining a potential Friend to suggest adding to my Social Network (click for a curious Fincher/Sorkin movielink, to The Film Sufi).

Or else the privacy pirates at Facebook have just gotten more agressive, …if you see beefing up “You May Know” as a marketing move, then I would certainly agree.

So when I clicked on my “You May Know…” Facebook link last Saturday, then asked to “See All”, I had no clue what a heavy load I was in for. Literally hundreds of names were on that list.

When all those algorithms kicked into high gear, then all the people I sorta know …who know other people I sorta know …started showing up on the list.  Then I got a little giddy and carried away with the Friend Requests. The list kept coming, and I kept clicking “+1Friend” every six names or so, and never did get down to the bottom of the list.

But I now fear I may be overreaching in who might be considered an actual friend.

Sorry. I just like people, and I want everyone to like me, too… whether or not you choose to “Like” me, or to “Like” Marking Time (or to like marking time, but that’s another story…)

So… if you are among my new potential acquaintances, or a semi-famous person whose article I once read a couple years back, or a person I talked to at a conference once for two minutes, or a hot chick, or the child of old casual friends whom I’m just curious about, feel free to Deny me.

If you need to Ignore me, or Deny me three times, or throw me under the bus for my questionable political agenda or whatever, go right ahead. I will not be offended, for honestly we barely know each other, so I can’t expect you to care.

Even so, here’s a small, relevant musical gift for your trouble. Stop on by to see this Solitary Man again sometime — if you like me, that is.



  1. From the beginning of the post I jumped the gun anticipating what you were going to say. What went through my mind was how differently people post. Some a lot of political stuff, some Ron Paulers, some anti-republican, some religious, etc. While the posting is quite different, for each individual there tends to be a theme.

    • Yah. I know it’s gotten more political or socio-religious over time, too. I even struggle with decisions over whether to UnFriend someone I disagree with, versus leaving them in place (as “equal time” dialogue participants, or maybe “oppostion research”). But I know better now than to actively poke certain bears and give them a platform to argue. It’s usually a waste of breath. I like creating sparks, but the flaming itself I can do without…

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