Since Mark Zuckerberg took over the world – well, the cyberworld in any case – it’s pretty much impossible to have an intelligent conversation without Facebook sneaking in at least once. More often than not its main role in any given conversation is that of being dissed with boring and predictable regularity. But of course, none of us actually go so far as to delete our accounts, mostly because it’s fun to whine about what a pain Facebook is. The only activity that offers more satisfaction is whining about what a pain most of the people on Facebook are.
Hence this post, which I’m writing with a totally straight face and no hint of irony, of course. I’m sure that the Reigning Monarchs of Lists at cracked.com have already covered this one, but I’m also sure they won’t begrudge the rest of us common mortals following in their footsteps and coming up with our own. My top four, in no particular order except for that in which they pop up on my homepage:
The Diabetes Donor
And so did half the Facebook population. The half that wasn’t busy making very painful, very public PDAs that they will be regretting in approx four.five months’ time, I mean. Or rather, as soon as the joy of spamming your friends’ homepage with a kilo of sugared puke wears off and you decide to move to pastures new.
And by pastures new I mean that busty Scandinavian’s Facebook wall. The one who looks like sugar wouldn’t melt in her mouth. I said SUGAR. We’re not talking about other things here, you sad perv. So suddenly as soon as you land on your FB homepage it’s back to the endless stream of vomit: Zach posted on Darlinka’s wall: Love you sweetcheeks. The whole spamming cycle starts again while the rest of the Facebook population wipes the sick off its collective mouths.
The Creepy Stalker
You know the kind. One fine day a friend request from random dude (let’s call him Pawlu l-Kink) hits your inbox. Now, you’re pretty sure you’ve never as much as laid eyes on this random dude, let alone exchanged enough pleasantries to justify a friend request. A cursory glance at the mutual friends section reveals zilch. You shrug, roll your eyes and accept the request on (very) limited profile.
At least that’s what I do. There is a logical reason why I don’t throw requests from strangers with names like Pawlu l-Kink into the ignore pile. Through the years, thanks to my line of work I’ve met gazillions of people with suspicious names. There are probably only three professions that throw you unmercilessly into the path of people like il-Kink. Prostitution and law, for starters. But since I dont really need to stick my head into the gutter for my daily bread, I belong to the other, cough, more respectable one that is the media. Hence people like il-Kink (whose claim to newsworthy fame, incidentally, was crossing the Fliegu with one arm tied to his back while singing la Cucaracha, you prejudiced bastard) finding themselves on my friends list.
Which means that random dude reaching out to me on FB could very well be a bona fide acquaintance. Knowing my goldfish kinda memory this realisation typically only hits after an embarrassingly long span of time. Which in turn means that most of the random strangers thus collected were not creepy losers trawling for random pants to get into. Well, some of them weren’t anyway. At least two, in fact. The rest? The rest usually follow the boringly predictable pattern depicted in this charmingly, if somewhat roughly, manipulated image (click to enlarge).
It’s not that I’m a particularly pessimistic soul. Cynical, maybe. Fond of the odd dash of twisted humour, certainly. Pessimistic never. So I can’t quite figure out what it is about a constant stream of happyclappy, inspirational, pseudo-philosophical status updates that makes me want to set fire to the machine and get medieval on the perpetrator’s ass (sorry, Jules). We all have one on our friends list, someone who is a master in the art of stating the obvious while pretending they’re spouting some truly deep shit. The fact that the obvious is usually misspelt doesn’t exactly help foster the charitable feeling.
“Wot goes round cums round.”
Yeah so do boomerangs and there’s nothing particularly philosophical about those.
“Things heppen 4 a reason it cant rain every time!”
Master of logic AND one hell of a weatherman, all rolled into one.
“Life its a beautifull gift, take care of it.”
Tell that to the poor bitch who just lost her job, has been dumped AND woke up with a massive zit on her chin. Rubbing it in much?
The Spammer With a Cause
It usually starts with one harmless notification. Jenna Smith has posted on your wall. You scratch your head, perplexed. You’re not particularly close to Jenna, why on earth would she drop by your wall? Hey, maybe it’s that hilarious link with the farting monkey everyone is talking about? You check your wall, fully expecting an assault by gassy primates. But no. This is what you find instead: Every person has a 1000 wishes. A cancer patient has only one wish, to get better. I know that 97% won’t post this but I have a personal reason for asking. My real friends will be the 3% who repost this. Repost if you ever knew someone who bla bla bla bla.
So let’s get this straight. If I don’t repost this it means I’m cheering for cancer to do its nasty thing, right? It means that I’m a heartless so-and-so who doesn’t give a flying duck about your suffering aunt/cousin/mother/whatever. And if I repost, it’s one nail in cancer’s coffin because…well, because you know. It’s a Facebook spam status so it can’t fail to work. Those who have really gone through this particular pain are only too aware that no amount of Facebook statuses will make things better. You’re only irritating them with your trite and banal lecturing.
Of course, spamming isn’t limited to sickness. There are the religious do-gooders (Jesus Christ died for you, repost if you believe…) the fake charity ones (This status is being tracked, the owners of Facebook will send one $1 to the victims of…) and the paranoid ones (Your account will be deleted if you don’t…) Most of the people on my friends list have, at one time or another, succumbed to the temptation to become a spammer with a cause. For the majority, it’s happily a one-off. Unfriending everyone would be a massive pain and would pretty much defeat the purpose of being on Facebook, so this is the one category where I’m willing to close an eye. Or two. Or even three, if I really, really like you. By the fourth spam tag on my wall you’re out. You have been warned.