Proper Facebook Etiquette

#212 And you are?…

Monday 2nd July, 2007

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How do I respond to someone’s friend request if I have no idea, or recollection of who they are?

First and foremost you never ask directly ‘who are you’. That is the height of rudeness, making not only yourself look less than sophisticated or lacking in social refining but also completely undermines the person’s potential significance to you.

Such a scenario is also likely to result in a terse, or embarrassed response from the sender – they are upset as you have no recollection or clue as to whom they may be, and you look stupid from not remembering.

But your a busy and popular person you cannot be expected to remember everyone, especially with some of the tenuous connections that can come through Facebook.

Facebook is a networked place, chances are one of your friends, or friends of friends will ‘know’ this person. You can search their ‘friends’ list and see if there’s any commonalities. Another tactic is to check their group lists and see if you belong to any of the same forums, perhaps they are responding to an intellectual post you have placed.

Otherwise ‘delete’ and go. That is the beauty of Facebook you do not necessarily have to explain your actions and can tailor make your social connections to include only those who are worth remembering after all!

11 Responses to “#212 And you are?…”

  1. Anonymous says:

    My parents have put my wedding photos on facebook and tagged them – didn't know they knew how to do that. Now my friends can see them and I'm getting comments that are rude about the dress. But is was a better color in real life just looks a bit odd on the photos. I want to take them off but this might make too much of it – so suppose I have to leave them up there! people keep control of your relatives!

  2. Anonymous says:

    I put I'm on hol on my facebook but my parents think I should not do this as everyone will know and come and rob the empty house. Are they right?

  3. Dr Mariann Hardey says:

    @ Anon,

    tricky situation. you’re brave and very sensible to be facing up to the responsibility of an STD. Perhaps decorum dictates that this should not be one for public broadcast , but is of more sensitive nature and should you need to contact potential others i would encourage you to do this face-to-face. or at least voice to voice. no-one wants to read that kind of writing on their Wall. Good luck.

  4. Anonymous says:

    I have just found out I have genital herpes. I’m OK about this but should I update this cos I’m not sure who I might have been with last term. The Doc told me I ought to tell people so they could have the test. But I don’t want to be seen as a slut.

  5. Ana says:

    I feel that I have been left to fade into the background as I am being ignored after my friend requests.

    Am i ignored or being simply overlooked and were they ever my friend at all?

  6. Maz Hardey says:

    Lucy, my goodness what faculty are you a part of?!… maybe you need to cut yourself off from those learing lothario’s and ingratiate yourself with a more sophisticated network. That or just show what complete numpty’s they are by writing on their walls… ok image is an emphasis on SNS, but more so for the likes of MySpace as populated more by 14 year olds – generally on Facebook things are a little more mature, a little less about ‘looks’ and ‘image’ and about making and sustaining connections with one another.

    But as ‘jocks will be jocks’, the shallow Neanderthals shall continue to be so on Facebook too.

  7. Lucy says:

    Do guys see things different? In my faculty there is competition amongst the men to see how many ‘fit chicks’ show up as their friends. I’ve been pushed hard by some of the jocks in the club to be their friends so Facebook so they can get in with the cheers. So things are not what they seem and no one thinks that stuff in the RW can make a difference here. Jocks will be Jocks even in cyberspace!

  8. Maz Hardey says:

    aha! splendid thank you Anonymous! yes you are absolutely right SNS are distinct from eDating sites… although there is bound to be some cross over between the types of individuals that use eDating and sign up to sites like Facebook.

  9. Maz Hardey says:

    I think that it would be wrong to say that SNS are the new dating resource as that suggests that these sites are being sourced primarily for dating reasons – which they are not. Certainly dating practices are an element of what happens on Facebook, not least as you can display you ‘taken’ status or otherwise, but this is about connecting with primarily known others, not adding spurious lists of friends such as on MySpace.

    But people meet and connect in a variety of ways and now SNS is making it easy to stay in touch with friends, and ‘new’ acquaintences there are certainly aspects of dating etiquette that is being tapped into – not least as a lot of questions i have been asked have been about ‘getting to know’ someone that you are attracted to and Facebook represents a great resource to ‘get to know’ someone in a very informal and non-threatening way… So for the digitally savvy amongst us maybe Facebook will become a dating crux, but a ‘resource’ as a whole, I think that that is misjudging why people use the site!

  10. Anonymous says:

    No – well not really – as Internet dating is a million$ industry and makes money by more or less putting stranger together. Maz’s point is that SNS is different and so ‘dating as such may happen but only as a spin off as NOT as the core reason people use SNS.

  11. Anonymous says:

    So is Facebook and other SNS the new internet dating resource?

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