Warning: This is a bit of a rant.
Over the past few years my attitude and philosophy about Facebook and specifically FB friends has been evolving.
At the Last Best Conference in Missoula last week, a group of entrepreneurs met to learn, get inspired, and network. During that conference I realized that it’s not how many FB friends, Twitter followers, or LinkedIn connections a person has, it’s about real people being connected with each other in real life.
So back specifically to the FB Friends issue …
I tend to let FB friend requests stack up. Why? Because I feel a desire to actually know the person. I want to actually be a friend with the person. Crazy, eh? So responding to the friend request takes more than clicking accept. I choose to look at their profile. Figure out how or where I know the person. And then send them a personal message thanking them for inviting me to be their friend and stating within the message something that will help me remember our connection. That takes time and energy. That’s why my FB friend requests tend to stack up.
The alternative is to click accept and then have another person as a FB friend who I have no idea who they are or where they came from … that doesn’t seem like much of a connection… or friendship.
Social media experts have said, “Every connection is valuable, you never know how or when that connection will pay off in the future.” Intellectually I understand that theory. Emotionally it seems like a waste of time.
I love Facebook and have reconnected with people from my past that would have never happened if it wasn’t for the miracle of Facebook.
But something is happening. Social media is maturing. It’s no longer the new, shiny object it was.
It’s exhausting. It’s impossible to keep up with. It’s becoming very, very noisy.
So I’ll continue to refine the way I use all of social media in the future. If it helps me connect with real people in a real way, then I’ll use it. If it’s about more adds, more likes, and more virtual friends that I have no clue who they are then I’m not interested. I just don’t have the emotional energy.