Proper Facebook Etiquette

#2024 Things you’d know only if you’re on Facebook at 03.00am

Friday 16th March, 2012

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Dear Dr Hardey,

Why do people log in to Facebook at 03:00am?

Thanks from Stockton.

When they first log in it’s likely they do their upper most to be friendly and easy-going.  Usually they’re in a buzzy if not semi-sober stupor. ‘What if my ex is happy in love with someone else?’ they can’t help thinking. Obviously this is why anyone logs in at 03:00am.  For the first few moments it is likely they’ll amuse themselves with other things before clicking on the ‘forbidden’ Newsfeed. Sometimes they’ll post onto their Wall. Mostly they’re thinking about how to interact ‘causally’ without giving too much away.

Often, they will flatter me, telling everyone they ‘love them’. You’d think there would be a degree of cynicism with such actions, but generally there is not. Everyone wants to be loved after all.

Finally, after logging out, it’s not as bad as you’d think.Rarely does something get shared that can’t be taken as humour or deliberately hidden.

I knew a gentleman who deleted his entire Profile (and thus all accompanying content) just because he had poked his ex.

Sometimes the we are just lonely. Recently, I was sent a Friend Request with the attached message to ‘be friends’ so he could tell me he loved me. Creepy (a little), but harmless.

By day I’m a academic in the Russel Group. I find it interesting to observe how colleagues and students choose to set up their social interactions. It’s quite interesting having another side of our lives we can literally switch on or off (to a certain extent).

I’ve been writing this blog for seven years (yep since 2005). I used to think Facebook was full of really exciting and confident people, but then all everyone is supposedly having ‘the best time’ all the time. Now I know you never can tell.

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