Tuesday, July 17, 2007
Come onto MyFace. MySpace. I mean, Facebook. Whatever.
There is a new phenomenon sweeping the interweb. Actually, for people like me, it is not so new, as the under-30s were among the first to discover the addictive virtual drug that is Facecrack.
Oh yes. It is surprisingly pleasing to find out that you have more online "friends" than the school super-cow, who not only has fewer allies than you, but most of her wall posts were written by her sister. Even better - she has also become very, very fat. There may even be a hairy mole on her lip. Oh yes. There is a sense of divine retribution visible through the medium that is ArseFace.
It is also delightful to have an old acquaintance, with whom you only stopped contact for very good reasons, and not because you could not be bothered, or because he secretly hated you and your poxy jokes, suddenly nudge you out of the blue and request you to be their friend.
But the downsides are becoming ever more evident the more addicted one gets to Facecrack. Firstly, there is the random date that you had who happens to find you on the web - CURSE thy parents who did not christen thee "Sarah Brown" or "David Smith". Or, there is the guy you dated so long ago that now, you must be friends, so you send him a chipper email thinking "he can accept me as a friend". Virtual rejection can be harsh.
Secondly, there is the utter stranger who wants you to be his special friend. You don't know him, so you "explore" his own profile, to discover he's a single friend of a mutual friend who happened to like your picture. He's also likely to be the person whose list of "Top Friends" includes several busty blondes from Arkansas and Dita von Teese.
Thirdly. Oh, yes, thirdly - your personal life is centred all over the page. It's easy to "hide" what you write on other people's walls, but when your friends start scrawling on your walls, or tagging you in photos looking drunk or semi-naked in a sheep dip in Wales, that's when you have to start worrying. Your friends are no longer compartmentalised into sanitary little boxes. I don't mean sanitary towel boxes. I digress.
Fourthly - this is starting to sound like a Mennonite sermon - there is the endless line of "pokes". These started off as a little way of saying hi to the people you're semi-friends with, or people you fancied but did not like to keep writing on their walls in case they served you with a restraining order, sued the hell out of you, or - worst of all - removed you from their list of friends. So, a little Poke. Hi! How YOU doin'?
BUT NOT ANY MORE. Now you have super poke! Poke Pro! Pokemon, pig in a poke, poke-ahontas and Poke on Trent. You can now slap, tickle, throw a sheep at, high five, punch, beat someone over the head with a metal chair until they are senseless, give beer to, send a cow to and crap all over someone's face virtually.
The other day I came onto facebook and found 14 pokes, and more people lining up to throw sheep at me. Thankfully I realised that if I returned the sheep-shag to someone else, I would end up having that application automatically installed onto my profile.
Applications have to be the fifth point, moving logically on and enabling me to count without having to look at my other hand. APPLICATIONS SUCK No, worse. They blow. They blow enormous stomach-chunks. There are applications to share a happy hour cocktail! There's a Hot Rating application (someone gave me a 10 out of 10 but I still didn't want it on my profile. Thanks anyway, Mum). There's applications to show how far you have travelled in your lifetime - the more countries you visit, the higher your global percentage is. Well not if all the freaking countries you visit are tiny - Monaco, Belgium, Holland, Jamaica, Cuba and Luxembourg do not show up very well. But for the greenies out there, is there ANOTHER map application you can use to show what your travelling carbon footprint is? No, but I'd like some of those "I've visited all the big ones" show-off nark heads to have a go on one of those applications, the carbon-crunching, polar bear murdering arsewipes.
There are applications for opinion polls (which biscuit would you be and why? A: A poisoned batch that has been sent to the Facebook office). You can be in a battle between vampires and werewolves. You can get bitten by a zombie, play tag, share fortune cookies, list your favourite movies, create slideshows of your cars and have special facebook pages created for your mangy old dog. Oh Yes, there is Dogbook, catbook, hamster book and myfavouritecock book.
All of these applications sound great fun if a) you really have nothing better to do in your life b) you are under 20 c) your internet connection is fast enough and smart enough to deal with all these things.
Sixthly - over to the other hand now, I hope it doesn't get to 11 or I will have to take my shoes and socks off - there are Groups. Alan Whicker is Probably a Very Nice Man. I was at Wahiki. I am a Gimp. We Love Our Cats. We know the difference between Your and You're (because we are smart-assed little basement geeks who have no girlfriends and who wear colours that do not appear in nature). Christians Against Rich Tea Biscuits (actually, I am in that one, it is a cause I support dearly).
In retribution I have finally snapped. I think it was the invitation to join the group: "People who cannot spell my name correctly desurve (sic) to be shot" that made me want to reach into my computer, find the Facebook organiser, staple their ear to a doorpost and pussywhip them into a bleeding mass with my bare hands.
So I have created my own group: No more Groups, Applications or Events, Please, For the Love of Mercy. Yes, I appreciate the irony.