Proper Facebook Etiquette

#917 I don’t want to be rude…

Friday 21st January, 2011

Dear Mariann,
Is there a rule about being away from Facebook? I have a thesis to write and I want to post up ‘I am writing so will not be looking at Facebook until June’. I don’t want to be rude but anyone that matters has my email and I will look at that. I just do not want the distraction of Facebook – but is this social death?
From Jenny in reply to post #316 Too Obsessed!

I once fell for a man who lived the other side of the ocean. Constantly Facebook was my window into his world and his into mine.  He liked me and visa versa, although  perhaps he was liked just that little bit more. ‘Social death’ arrived in the form of his new girlfriend posting to my page. After weeks of attentive attention to communication detail, I made sure that I was away from Facebook for well over a month. Friends thought that I had become a social pariah. My father thought that the broadband had stopped working. I tried not to think. Too much.

Over the next month, the man in question continued to post daily to me. My absence from Facebook, rather than being rude, was a ‘real’ moment in time to concentrate on more important things. A thesis to write is like a man in many ways, in that the harder you have to convince various aspects of it, the more time you waste and ultimately end up deciding that it isn’t worth convincing.

In terms of how you keep your social grace, I have my own Rolodex for precisely this kind of prioritisation.  Yes, post to your Facebook page that you are ‘away writing incredibly important and world changing ‘stuff”. On your return you’ll be thanked for not boring everybody with the constant updates regarding the completion of sequential chapters and/or writers block.

Incidentally the Rolodex – or rather the contents therein – also came in quite handy with the separation from said man. Facebook doesn’t hold the key to everything. Just most things.

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