Remember the days before Facebook? I do. I remember the days before MySpace. It seems nowadays, Facebook is in every nook and cranny of life. Myself, I visit my page many times daily, checking the status of friends, updating my status, trying to maintain a connection to the cyber community I have so carefully constructed to fit my needs.
My page once geared toward my personal life, took a turn a few years back and transformed into a social network for my academic endeavors. My college pals became the mainstay of my page. Now that my life has changed chapters again, my page has taken another form. I am now “plugging in” as an author and freelance writer. Sure, I still have my family and some of my closest college pals as “Friends”, but my focus switched. My “posts” are now centered on my career choice.
For me, as an author and a writer that means I somewhat have to be aware of what I post; it reflects on the things I write, and me. Use poor grammar or bad punctuation, which I admit is my Achilles heel, and sure enough someone will say something to the effect, “Hey, I thought you were a writer. What gives?” I’ll suppress the embarrassment and move past the moment, as I am sure there will be more mistakes made in the future – I am not perfect.
In addition to my personal Facebook page, I maintain a Facebook Fan page https://www.facebook.com/AuthorDaneAllenLadwig . Many times, I wonder why I began a Fan Page, but I suppose it is because I am an author and I do publish my work that I felt the need to offer a Fan Page. I am content with my blog, https://daneladwig.wordpress.com/ it is reaching over fifty countries, and over a thousand views a month, but I wish to expand its limitations.
Now comes the hard part – the work. I loathe adding friends on my Facebook page just to add them. To me, unless you know the person they are not a friend, they are a faceless name hiding behind a cyber identity they created. How could someone even know with absolute truth if the person on the other end of the profile actually exists? They can’t! So, if I wish to build a fan base for my book(s) I am forced to create an account solely for the purpose of fake relationships – friendships that never were, and I am fairly certain will never be.
I know people who pride themselves on how many Facebook friends they have, “I have 1868 friends”, “That’s nothing dude. I have 17,682 friends”. When asked how many they have ever met in the flesh, it usually comes out to about 150-200. So, who is kidding who, and why? Why the façade? I have befriended a few well-known authors with best-sellers. They have several thousand followers. They never update their status, I wonder if they even visit their page. Just because you are on Johnny Depp’s friends list, does not qualify you as a “friend”. Try hitting him up in a chat and see if he will help you out when your car breaks down on the interstate, or if he will sit with you all night long while your child’s fever breaks, those are friends.
How this loose concept of friends began is deceiving and it troubles me. It will not be long until we consider all of humanity our “friends”. It’s nice to be liked and even nicer if it’s genuine. Manufactured “likes” are synthetic – they are a product of a deeper issue, a possible issue within ones character makeup.
Have you ever wondered, while desperately petitioning for friends that the person you are befriended on Facebook may be contemplating the murder of his or her family, or even worse, they may have already committed the act? A quick Google search will reveal startling results of individuals who used Facebook to murder victims on their alleged “friends” list, http://rawjustice.com/2010/12/13/15-people-who-used-facebook-to-commit-crimes/. The words “chose wisely” come to mind. But then again, if you are hiding behind anonymity, perhaps you feel you are “safe”. Think again. Just yesterday, I booted up my computer and my neighbor’s secured connection was unsecure. I notified her. It seems a hacker had no problem getting into her system.
Nevertheless, my over awareness and hypersensitivity to this issue continues. I vow to find a solution. Sometimes, I believe I have been gifted, or cursed, with too much moral composition; if I were a bit less attentive to the implications of all matters concerning life, it may be possible my life would be less complicated and I might be bit happier? Then again…
This has been a…View From My Loft