Friday, December 11, 2009

The Problems With Friends Lists

I’m trimming a few of my friends in Facebook. Not a ton, but a few folks who are wonderful for wanting to follow me, but who I haven’t really interacted with in well over a year. (Quick note: none of the people in the picture to the left were being trimmed. I just took a snap of where I was in the list.)

The Emotions Around the Data
What strikes me is that this is a potentially emotional exchange to what should be a simple choice of data management. Think about it. If you remove someone as a friend, it says something more than just a line of data, doesn’t it? There’s an emotional transference. Some of you will argue that there shouldn’t be, or that someone should get over it, or whatever, but for the most part, I’d say that people who use social networks extensively (versus people trying to plumb the system for business purposes) would feel a little something, should they find themselves defriended.

It says you’re not important. It says you’re no longer relevant. It says you’re no longer entitled to a more intimate view and sharing. There are lots of potential combinations to feel when one is unfollowed or defriended.

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