I have often written about social media diminishing real world interpersonal relationships. This blog entry is no exception.
I present you with the latest example from my Facebook page, on which I wrote the opening statement:
In response to the question posed in the status update field of my Facebook page, "What is on your mind?":To this opening statement, a person with whom I once had almost daily contact for many years because we both had worked for the same employer responded:
If I have so many friends on Facebook, why do I feel so all alone?
Facebook is not the same as having an interpersonal friendship with someone. Humans needs that face to face contact. To me someone who makes a post on their page, is no different than someone walking by on the street just saying hi, how ya doing. We need that one on one conversation time, where people sit and talk face to face to each other.This person apparently did not grasp the full intended meanng of my statement, but, none-the-less actually made my point in a roundabout offhanded way. You see, not only do I know the person from our previous work life, but the person also has attended luncheon meetings of our mutual workpace retirees (a somewhat small group of actuall attendees) as have I - - - and the person does not acknowledge my presence at those luncheons. Additionally, there were other people from my Facebook "friends" list who agreed with the respondent's comment.
You may be wondering how did that comment with its supporters make my point.
I will tell you.
The number of my Facebook "friends" list totals 698. The vast majority of that number is composed of people with whom I have had many years of some form of interpersonal relatonship, i.e. employment associates, school classmates, or fellow members of a wide variety of (political, labor, professional, social, fraternal, charitable, civic, and community) organizations, as well as extended family. In other words, my Facebook "friends" purport to be my friends in the real world outside of Facebook. And of those 698, I have more fingers on one hand than the number who have any amount of personal face-to-face contact with me.