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Of Facebook and Friends and Other Observations

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Facebook has grown so big that is astonishing. Statistics tell that 50% of 500 million number of people login to their account each day .

Being a computer student is an added advantage which brings with it not-so-easy-to-deal-with disadvantage. Since all your friends are more computer literate than others, its easy to connect with friends and make friends with a stranger because of same area of study if at all that person too is a computer junkie. The sad part is that if you put off the computer, then all your friends circle is gone.The whole world is a bit more stranger than before.

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An interesting study done by the researchers at MIT , has found out that a person can maintain social bond with a maximum of 150 people. He may know more number of people but that does not necessarily translate to effective strengthening of relationship. In their words,

The bottom line is this: social networking allows us to vastly increase the number of individual we can connect with. But it does nothing to change our capability to socialise. However hard we try, we cannot maintain close links with more than about 150 buddies.

A guy has written a post which questions the notion of number of friends written from a geek perspective.He questions, in his words

So I find it interesting how Social Media has removed the barrier for those of us who kept close to a small group in school, are now suddenly compelled to link up with everyone who wants to be our friend on Facebook or LinkedIn? Are we secretly trying to make up for all those times that [insert rejection event here]?

One thing that is amusing is the inherent bias as a result of our brain’s limited capability. As for that matter, even Facebook allows customization so that one can block updates from his friend(s). And by default, the result shown on the home page is the feed from the persons whom the person has recently interacted with.

On a related note, it is worth pondering how many friends a person has. The thin Maginot line that exists between real friends and just friends and acquaintances is so hard to deduce. In Anne Frank‘s words,

What’s is left of this girl? Oh, don’t worry, I haven’t forgotten how to laugh or to answer bac readily. I’m just as good,if not better, at criticizing people, and I can still flirt if… I wish. That’s not it though,I’d like that sort of life again for an evening, a few days, or even a week, the life which seems so carefree and gay. But at the end of that week, I should be dead beat and would be only too thankful to listen to anyone who began to talk about something sensible. I don’t want followers, but friends, admirers who fall not for a flattering smile but for what one does and for one’s character.

I know quite well that the circle around me would be much smaller. But what does that matter, as long as one still keeps a few sincere friends?

Or this @whitegrlproblem tweet,

I’m not sure if I have any friends.

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