Some thoughts on Facebook

And now, a word on our favorite topic: Facebook.

1. “Facebook” is not a verb. “To Facebook,” “Facebooked,” “Facebooking,” and other similar words are not adequate to be used as verbs. I’m not saying you can’t invent words — I’m all for social-media-related made-up words. My problem with “to Facebook,” though, is that it is too vague.

Example: “Sam Facebooked me last night.” That could mean that he:

a) Looked you up on Facebook

b) Sent you a message on Facebook

c) Sent you a friend request on Facebook (please note: I am 100% okay with the word “friended”)

If you’re looking for words you can use where your listener won’t have to guess exactly what kind of an online relationship is developing, try the following:

a) He Facebook stalked me — OR, he looked me up on Facebook.

b) He FB messaged me.

c) He friended me.

2. Enough with the group Facebook messages. There must have been a setting that came out recently without a press release, but when you send a Facebook message to more than one person, the recipients can ONLY “reply all.”

So when you send a message to your 100 closest friends and ask if anyone has a floppy hat you can wear to the derby, each time someone replies, “No, sorry, I left it at my parents’ house in Kentucky,” EVERYONE in the group has to read it. Other than opening up a new message to reply only to the original sender, there is no way around this.

And if you’re not interested in what the group has to say on this topic, the only way out of this extremely irrelevant group message is to press “Leave conversation.” But when you do that, it shows up in the group message as “Lia Lehrer has left the conversation.” In other words, “Lia Lehrer has decided that she is too busy and too important to have to deal with the banal responses in this group — see ya later, losers!”

So … to save everyone the headache and the heartache, do the following:

a) Message your friends individually. It’s not that hard.

b) Send a group E-MAIL (remember E-MAIL??!?!?! Or is it too 2005?) — but don’t forget to BCC everyone.

That’s all I’ve got for now — I’m sure we’ll all chat more about these topics through Facebook messages.


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