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I dislike

I have 445 people on my friend's list on Facebook. 41 yet waiting on invite list.
What does it mean? If I pass by these 486 people on the street, would we stop, genuinely smile and have a conversation? Would we really care when we would ask 'how are you?'. I know of these people, mostly. Some of them are really close friends. Some are people I would like to be friends to. But most others are only joined by an association. Mostly through my post graduate school, MICA.
If I do a test of walking by all these 486 people, how many would I have to remove from the list? why should I be bothered by this number really? Well, primarily cause it confuses me. Is it right for me to see these photos? should i comment? how will they perceive my comment? With people you know closely enough there is no space for these questions.
There are handful of people who I would turn to for any sort of help .There are a few more with whom I would like to share stuff.  The rest are mostly irrelevant. But their updates inundate my screen.Unlike Orkut, there's hardly any conversation on FB. So no possibility of having some shared good time with acquaintances even; no arguments, no talk, only posing.
There's this annoying invisible hand of obligation; some kind of social network's social contract. Thou shall entertain acquaintance's self-indulgence. Thou shall like posts (attempts at being witty/artistic/expert) of acquaintances so that they feel a little better about themselves.
If my face book friend list contained just my friends, then I would have posted far more frequently, commented far more frequently. There's this continuous awareness and hence self-censoring due to FB page being a public forum almost. a very impotent forum at that. All posts get dissolved in the distance that one has to keep in this impotent forum. If the circle were really small, then posts would have had effect; mobilisation in certain emotive direction.
I consider myself very rich to have a fraction of that number as my friend. The high number though mock those who don't have many friends.
I wanted to delete my FB account often. I remember seeing pictures of an acquaintance in some lovely foreign country enjoying himself. And I remember feeling pathetic because of it. Even though I had just returned from a fabulous trip to Vietnam. I don't like this person in me who is competing to have a fabulous life. I was never like this before.
I hate it when I find myself checking out Facebook page often to see what people have commented about my latest photo upload. I never used to do that on Orkut. Since when did I start feeling the need for appreciation?
Its as if these baser qualities found a voice through Facebook, which until now had lain dormant completely.
But I do not delete my FB account for one reason alone. Its now an integral part of your online persona and a very efficient way to stay connected to new friends you make. I would not be able to stay connected otherwise with the friends I make during travel or parties.


Anonymous said…
Very true. I think facebook is the ultimate test of your inner strength and grace. no? to stay in line. to not become an exhibitionist. to have the strength to know that it isn't necessary to compete. to have the sense to know that everyone has the same number of pebbles :)

we are given resources and what we do with them and how we let the resources affect us comes from our strength. I've deleted my FB account many times because of many or all of the reasons you've mentioned. But it makes better sense to stay on it and stay true to who you are.
Ajinkya said…
exactly :D
hmmm.. it makes me wonder.
orkut failed, where FB is succeeding. what does this say about our world?
that sanitization is more important than conversations? (orkut lost cuz mostly people didnt want anymore 'fraands')
that western model of individuality is completely successful in its dissemination (where lonesome posturing pervades rather than actual group belonging)
what does the word 'share' mean now? will u part with something valuable to you that's not free online?
Fleurette said…
Your blog is great. I too am thinking of this all the time, and I have a lot of people on my waiting list just to see how many "friends" my facebook account manages to gather.. hah.
Ajinkya said…
thank you for your appreciation :)
and secondly, thanks for introducing me to mnmilist.. i think i will implement it's theme on my blog. it looks lovely.

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