The four and a half year relationship was lovely. It started out so simple and mixed with a hint of naivete. Status updates stimluated an outlook on life never exercised before; receiving birthday wishes from acquintances/friends of the moment who would normally forget; and a photo album containing a mere 20 pictures of funny and cool experiences over a months period. The relationship now is headed for a nasty divorce. And the kind of divorce that makes for good material for shows like “Real Housewives of Big American Town.”
The beginning of this relationship felt safe: only other college students could have the luxery of setting up a facebook page – and only if their college had received the invitation from Mark Zuckerberg himself. Privacy settings were simple and life was good. Then, anyone with an email address could join. At the time even that was acceptable albeit annoying to the elite group that had possessed a profile in the past. Non-facebook users were still obsessed with MySpace or firmly believed in what Oprah or Dr. Dobson had warned them about online websites and privacy.
Then, Facebook wasn’t just a place to post pictures from Spring Break for you and your friends to look at and remaniss. It was now occupied by your mentors from junior high and that kid you babysat. Few years later, throw in applications that give your index finger arthritis while clicking “ignore”, an info section that looks like a SF-86 government form, and MOTHERS on Facebook and bam: I’m headed to divorce court.
Facebook has now become some weird internet demensia that encourages sharing of absoultely any and every kind of information, complete with marketing ads. No longer can you control exactly who sees what or who shares what with who knows what. And guess what? It is a nightmare.
So what’s the solution for the generation born during the Reagan-Bush Administrations? Work on being less of control freaks? Perhaps. Get over the fact that Facebook is no longer used as a way to stay connected with just fellow peers no strings attached? Maybe. OR, should we stop sharing chunks and pieces of our lives? Definately.