It started with Friendster a few years ago . . . an old student of mine sent me a request to be his friend on Friendster. Remember Friendster? I joined, it didn't do much for me, I had no idea what I was doing except I had this one friend and then after about a year I had 2 or 3 friends. Non many of my friends belonged to Friendster so it was not a big deal. It died out.
Then one day my husband said, "Hey you should check out this MySpace thing" so I set up an account and labored over customizing my page. I had to have the most relaxing color and the most groovy font. I wanted the Dixie Chicks to sing that song that pissed everyone off in the country music world when my page loaded. I wanted my political views to slap everyone in the face when they browsed my page. I only wanted cool friends and sent Spam reports every time someone I didn't know, oh and porn stars tried to add me as their friend. It was very high school.
It was during my MySpace era that I set up a Facebook account. It was soooooo Dull, with a capital D. I quickly returned to MySpace. Much like the attention span of a high schooler, I lost interest in MySpace as it got "seedy" and "lame" and turned to Facebook. It was exciting!
It was so adult. It was so grown up. It was so hassle-free and vast. I found people I went to school with when I was 12 years old. I found people from around the world that I never thought I would meet again. I found boys I had dumped in college. I found girls whose clothes I had borrowed and never returned. I found people I hadn't seen in 20 years who now lived down the street. I found people who snubbed me and never accepted my friendship requests. I found people who collected friends but never actually emailed or chatted with me. I found people who remembered me, but for the life of me, I could not remember them. It was exhilarating!
It was addicting. All of a sudden I was checking Facebook before I checked my email. I was sneaking off to play Scrabulous (until they took it down) while the girls ate lunch. I was wishing I had a blackberry so I could check it at play dates and playgrounds. I was asking my husband if he could play Scrabulous with me from work. I was accepting and sending plans to help stop global warning. I was finding more and more friends I had lost contact with over the years. I was giving gifts of Indian food. I was buying Hermes scarves and handbags. I was having to pick a new pair of shoes everyday to avoid being barefoot. I was taking quizzes and tests and given compatibility scores. And then there was the chat! I could see who was online and decide if I wanted to chat with someone in the Canary Islands. I was It was like having a new full time friend and to tell you the truth, it was exhausting.
I wonder sometimes what we will do when we outgrow Facebook as we are bound to do. Will there be something bigger and better? Something even more exciting, exhilaration and exhausting? Will it include planting trees? Will there be Indian food? Will I be cool and have hundreds of friends? Will it be called Call Sheet? Binder Book? Roster List? Roll Call? Whatever they call it I'm sure that it will be a wild success and that it will lure people from everywhere much like Friendster, MySpace and Facebook.
Here's a wild idea, how about finding the time and space to sit down with your closest friends, have a coffee and chat and catch up and enjoy each other's company and call it "Face Time"?