Sunday, December 13, 2009

I Love Facebook (Sarcasm Edition)

I love Facebook. Many of you, my long-time, loyal readers (all four of you, apparently), already know this. From my obsessive commenting on my friends most trivial status updates to my posting cute pictures of kitties, I'm pretty much on Facebook all the time. See, I work in a restaurant whose business plan was apparently concocted by a Fred Flintstone, and we never have any business. (For example, we don't have business cards, even though every customer who comes in asks for one, so they could presumably remember the place or recommend it to their friends. But the owner doesn't want to spend the money on them. Ditto take out menus, which cost a penny a piece). So I stand behind the bar, with this convenient outlet and free internet connection, and nothing to do.

Now, even though I love Facebook, I find some of the things it does to be really annoying. Fingernails on a chalkboard kind of annoying. For example, Facebook has this section of "suggestions." Now, if these were really helpful suggestions, it would be telling me how to pick up hot women in bars, or recommending stock picks. Instead, it does things like this:

* "Lucille Willard has only 9 friends. Suggest friends for her." Well, FB, I would. But she's my mother. She only has 9 friends because she's 65-years old, and we're lucky she's even on the internet. For years she avoided computers because she wasn't sure where to insert the crank to power it up. If there were no eBay, I'm sure she wouldn't even bother with computers. So the number of people with whom she could be friends (i.e., proto-senior citizens not scared of computers) is already quite small. And besides, I don't think she'd like to be friends with any of my friends, unless she wants to be bombarded with hip cultural references to zombies, Halo 3, and Taylor Momsen, none of which she'd understand. (Nor do I think my friends want to be bombarded by her motherly nagging, which is apparently (based on her messages to me) the only thing she's capable of.)

* "Green Ronin Publishing. Say hello; write on their wall." Yeah, FB, I would love to. Unfortunately, GRP is a business. A company. It's not a persona. First, I don't think GRP gives a flying 20-sided die whether or not they hear from me. Second, I don't think anyone over there is sitting around, pining over the fact they haven't heard from me in awhile (which would mean, actually, never). Apparently, the programmers over at FB (motto: will program for curry) never took into account that not only people sign up to their service, but also businesses, who use it to communicate with their fans. Were I to write something on GRP's wall, it would be something along the lines of "can I have work?" and "can I have free games?"

* "[insert name]. Reconnect. Say hello." Hello person I friended after casually meeting them in a bar (typically female, always hot). Howdy friend from high school I haven't seen in 20 years, and only friended out of curiosity. Hola acquaintance who turns out to me a major douchebag who peppers me with ads for his business, a service I neither want nor need. Bonjour friend who pissed me off by borrowing money and never paying it back, meanwhile buying a new cell phone and TV. See, FB, there are people on my friend list that are not, in the strictest sense of the word, my friend. Maybe I'm too lazy to de-friend them; maybe I fear the karmic backlash that would no doubt result from hurting their feelings (I hear this is why Gandhi was shot). Perhaps the individual in question stopped logging into Facebook (I know, this is hard to believe), and hasn't responded in awhile, so I stopped trying. If I haven't interacted with a "friend" in awhile, FB, there may be a reason. It might be better if you just dropped it.

* "[insert name]. XX mutual friends. Add as a friend." I don't care that 36 of my friends are also friends with this person. I may be the only one in the group who always thought so-and-so was a douche. Maybe he slept with my girlfriend at a frat party. Maybe I still owe him money. Let's just say, if we're not friends already, we're not going to be. Tell you what: I'll search for the people with whom I want to be friends, and you can spend more time and energy recommending MILF-dating or chubbie-dating websites (you seem good at that already, and I say stick to your strengths).

*Facebook Chat. Sometimes, on especially boring nights, I like to chat with my friends. I find this a convenient way to interact with friends who may be far from me, geographically speaking. Or who have stopped taking my calls, for various reasons. And by "various reasons" I mean "drunk calling." So it would be handy, some might even say useful, if your chat service were a bit more reliable than opening the window and shouting. I've had fewer problems with two tin cans and string.

* Notifications. Hey Facebook! It's very nice that you inform me whenever someone comments on something I've posted to the site, or comments to a thread I'm following. Thank you for telling me I have new Zoosk matches, can get $10 off a spa day, or that I can now find out what Christmas song I am (that last one is really crucial, FB. FYI, it would be the Hannukah Song, by Adam Sandler). But it would be extra special nice with a cherry on top if you could keep it straight. For the last few days, I've had 42 notifications. The same damn 42 notifications, no matter what I do. I have notifications from last week appearing as though they were sent two minutes ago. It's irritating to click on a notification, thinking it's to something current, only to find out it was from last month. It's called "clearing the cache", which I'm not sure you've heard of FB. You may want to check it out.

That's really about it. I know most of these gripes are petty. I realize I'm criticizing a website for which I do not pay. Moreover, I understand that many of these issues result from lowest common denominator programming issues. Facebook doesn't know about the douchebag from Idaho, or my laziness to delete him and his obnoxious comments. It doesn't know Green Ronin or Zombie Planet aren't people. But then again, if I didn't bitch about it, I'd have nothing to write.

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