Proper Facebook Etiquette

#329 Facebook likes links

Saturday 5th July, 2008

Accepting, rejecting, maintaining, managing and yes, even snooping in on those Friend connections is the most basic (and most overlooked) aspect of Facebook life. Brining together prominent friends, and the not so high-up the social ladder acquaintances shapes the size, scope and range of our Facebook networks.

So here’s five ways to keep you and your Facebook friends happy, free of disorder and civil unrest.
Know your Friends.
Seems obvious, but Friending willy nilly those you’ve passed by at a party (at best) or have some vague recollection of, or rather don’t leads only to an awkward set of update surveillance as you both try to gauge how you 1. Know one another, and 2. Speculate as to the kind of social ‘relationship’ and communication to cultivate between the two of you. Of course if the person in question is a delectable dish, then there are exceptions to this strategy.

Share the load.

It’s not just about your Friends showing you love, but you have to reciprocate. There’s nothing like leaving a wallpost handing to make the other person feel inconsequential. In short, keep a united friendship-front.

Embrace your new found Friend freedom.

Where once in the playground it was common course to have one ‘best’ friend, and maybe another ‘best, best friend’; on Facebook there is planty of room for everyone. Unless you have more than 5,000 best, best, best, best buddies.. Still you could always set up more than one account, and who has time to poke all those names anyway?

Take time to take it in.

Things become accelerated, compressed only then to be speeded up all over again in such an immediate Facebook world. So it’s important to take some time out. To pause. When you can reflect. Breathe. In. And out. Taking your time means that the off-the-cuff response to the ‘ex’, midnight Poke, inappropriate Wallpost to your bosses Wall and naughty Youtube upload can be managed more effectively. Perhaps even to the extent where such exposures and potential social embarassments remain hidden and out of social harms way.

Pre-empt conflicts.

Stay involved in friends lives, both on Facebook and nudging them along when your both disconnected too. Too much time poking and not enough ‘real time’ prodding, try and work out a compromise together. Instead of Facebook ‘promsing’ to meet up ‘sometime or other’, commit to time and place in advance. And yes I mean more than the same day. I’m talking planning ahead, using that diary and scheduling in some incidences that you can brag about on Facebook another time.

Ultimately, (and contrary to those conservative critics) there is a real social value in being so social and so connected. Between us we have created a dynamic networked space where the structure of communication is an essential part of experiences in such a social world.

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