The Six Improvements Facebook Should Make To Their System Of Avatar Friends:
- 'Friendship' should be a renewable subscription. After two years of not running into that random person you met at the coffee shop, Facebook should be giving me a notification asking me if I really want to read about this douchebag's morning coffee, breakups, and political tirades. In real life, if I haven't seen you at all since two years ago when we met, I don't have to read about your opinion on Occupy Wall Street in the New York Times, and we are decidedly NOT FRIENDS. No hard feelings, that's just reality. But normally, I don't have to hunt down your address to send you a letter letting you know we ain't close like that. Expiration notices would go a long way toward culling the herd, and in a electronic system that remembers who I was drinking with in college better than I do, would be much appreciated.
- Myspace understood the NEED for a 'top friends' list, but didn't understand 'why': my 5 best friends 'blocked list' should be MY 'blocked list'. If your beefin' with my best friend of over ten years, chances are I don't want you posting on my wall. Nobody needs to know who my best friends are, I know who they are and they know who they are. But I could use their judgement calls to help weed out the trolls that leave 29 comments on my posts and stalk my friends via messages. If your boy/girl was dating some asshole that killed their Dog and left creepy messages on their answering machine 3 years after they broke up, generally they're not welcome at the table you're sitting at in the bar. The same should go for my Wall.
- All dating status changes should require a month long 'registration period', not because it takes any time to register the change in Facebook, but to allow appropriate time to register the change in reality. If a couple had three dates in two weeks and start dating exclusively, the 'World Of Facebook' (from now on refered to as W.O.P. without any ethnic or Orc connotation) can wait 30 days for the rest of us walking the earth to give a shit. If you can't wait, it's most likely because the status can't either, so let W.O.P. save you from advertising your inept ability to stay in a relationship: Everyone who needs to know that has already defriended you anyways, despite having never returned the shirt you left at their house that one time.
- Everyone in my family list should automatically be banned from seeing other people's pictures of me. I know I didn't take, nor post, any pictures of myself doing that beer bong in '06. However, someone else in that 50 person crowd did, someone else told them my name, they subsequently tagged my name to my upside-down face, and now the picture has shown up on my wall while I'm at work. Cool, I kinda wanted that picture for the laughs. My mother didn't find it as funny as I did however, and now I'm driving home to an intervention because I felt like cutting loose after that two week relationship status abruptly changed. Thanks W.O.P., now when I go to the bar I have to tell Mom it's a 'meeting'.
- The person going to the event needs the guest list, not the rest of the 100 people invited. Now my Mom really knows I'm not at that meeting, my failed relationship has become a successful stalker, my real friends have assumed I'm at the party I flaked out on, and a whole shitload of douchebags have flocked to the party because Jenny's hot ass said she was going. She don't need that, I don't need that, my Mom doesn't need to know that, and W.O.P. has fucked up a perfectly good night out on the town. Congrat-a-fuckin'-lations!
- Everything that happened three years ago is private! In three years, what happened in Facebook should stay in W.O.P, and not in the face of my potential bud/employer/spouse. I don't remember how much of a tool I was three years ago, that's the beauty of memory: it doesn't work. John Doe shouldn't know how hungover I was after the party I did the beer bong at six years ago after that bitch killed my Dog and Mom called to talk about my 'problem'. That 'status' has lost its relevence. Class dismissed.