Thursday, October 25, 2007

...and speaking of facebook

"You are invited to put me in your top friends!...rate your friends!...rate my personality!...guess my IQ! (are you smarter than me?)...describe me in two words!...compare me to my friends!" Is it only me, or do you sometimes feel uncomfortable with the facebook applications sent to you?

Yes, I admit it, I'm a facebook junky. After only 3 weeks on facebook, I challenge any of you to have more applications than me.

I've done the IQ test, the 10 second interview (always wanted to do one of those), the personality test, the "which female super hero are you?" quiz (Wonder Woman and Princess Leia, if you're wondering.) I've listed my favourite causes, movies, and music, and displayed quotes and pictures from the best films of all time. I've joined all the groups with the coolest titles: "I'd marry the Beast if I could have a library like that..."

I've even asked friends to "join my pirate army", one of the more annoying and pointless facebook applications (where are you, me hearties?)

I've decorated my profile with every garden, aquarium and room out there, and I've got my very own art gallery (250 paintings so far - I'm a little obsessive.) I send myself (or my kids) hatching eggs and growing seeds so I can have my favourites on my profile (would someone please send me the grow-a-gift pile of books, by the way, so I look less pathetic?)

Rearranging my facebook profile is the only craft this mother of 4 has energy for at the moment.

Facebook is seriously useful for making and maintaining connections (I've made new friends and rediscovered old ones on the other side of the world). It's quicker and easier than email. It keeps me in touch with how friends, relatives, students and graduates are going (I'm not much good with phone calls.) It enables me to encourage sick and lonely friends with a message or gift. It keeps us mothers from feeling isolated when we're at home all day with young children.

And some facebook applications are wonderful, like the ones which allow you to share books. My 1 year old son now performs death-defying mountaineering feats on the pile of library books recommended by my facebook friends. Unfortunately, I've got no time to read them, I'm too busy facebooking.

But I find some of the applications a little disturbing.

Apparently, a very lovely friend thinks I'm "most likely to kick it with Jesus some day" (the facebook version of salvation by grace?) and some kind and forgiving person (you know who you are) described me as "wise" and "godly" in the "define me!" application (I hide that one down on the bottom left corner of my profile, to remind me what I have to live up to.)

I have my very own entourage ("Jean rolls 71 deep!"). I squirm every time I see it, but it's handy how it shows the photos in alphabetical order. One day, I may even "rate my friends", so I'm not so overwhelmed by the large number of faces on there (I got a bit excited asking people to "be my friend!" when I first went on facebook.)

My facebook profile is an opportunity to display my inner self (or at least the parts I want you to see): my favourites, my top ten, my personality, my mood, how you define me, how you compare to me. Harmless fun? - perhaps, but appealing directly to the self-absorbed egotist in all of us.

That said, I'll "define you", "compare you" or give you a "superlative" any time you ask.

Enough about that, gotta go now, someone's asked me to do a facebook quiz on my top 10 pet peeves...

3 comments:

sandra j said...

Yeah, Josh McDowell (of "I Kissed Dating Goodbye" fame!) commented similarly on facebook's tendency to self-obsession:
http://www.joshharris.com/2007/08/my_one_and_only_week_on_facebo_1.php

Rachach said...

i agree jean. it's a blessing and a curse!
how would you define yourself? or is that what this blog is about? ha ha

Jean Williams said...

yep, post on blogging coming right up...