Friday, July 03, 2009

Facebook: Some Positives

So, I've posted a bit about my ambivalence about Facebook. It's a time suck. You end up becoming "friends" with a lot of people who you never really liked very much in the first place (I'm thinking the random people from high school who I only vaguely remember) or people with whom you don't need to be facebook friends because you are real life friends with them. You can, if you allow yourself to do so, come to feel like a loser either because your status is not as interesting as your facebook friends', or, conversely, because your facebook friends' statuses are deeply lame, and if you're "friends" with these people, then you must be lame, too.

But over the past few weeks, I'm coming to see that Fb has its benefits. I've gotten back in touch with family (esp. my dad's side of the family). I've been found by my three best friends from kindergarten. I'm able to keep in touch with grad school friends more easily, as well as with former students of mine.

But the best part? I've got a friend from high school who works in the wine industry and lives in Napa Valley. And because Fb is so impersonal, it has turned me into the sort of person who has no qualms about inviting myself for a visit! At any rate, Crazy shall be going to wine country over her spring break! Huzzah!

8 comments:

Anastasia said...

aha! you've seen the light! wine country! yay!

I've actually been invited to contribute to a collection of essays AND been invited to give a paper at Conference At Which I Would Otherwise Have No Prayer of Being Accepted through facebook...through folks I barely knew in grad school but who are amused by my status messages.

Caroline said...

I've pretty much obliterated Facebook - the amount of drama it's caused these past few months isn't even funny. Only thing I keep it for is Bejeweled Blitz. Which, incidently, I totally need to talk to you about - how high are your scores?! :)

Aurora said...

Seems like the friends whose status I don't really want to know are the ones always posting updates. Overall FB is a nice way to stay in touch.

Susan said...

I've been in touch with some cousins I never see and hadn't heard from in years, as well as friends from junior high and high school. I also got friended by one of my cousins' daughter. Then there are indeed the random people who you didn't know then (or in college) who say "I see we were classmates" and I want to say "If I don't remember your name, why are we friends now?"

When you come to the Napa Valley, I'm not that far away, so we'll have you visit too!

Belle said...

Ooohhh, wine country. Glorious. I've not been found by too many people from the distant past, but have had people - former students - who drop by to tell me how wonderful I am. That I like!

AcadeMama said...

Yes, the contacts aspect of FB is absolutely the best benefit! I've been able to make contacts with senior colleagues at conferences as well as stay in touch with friends from grad school over the years.

life_of_a_fool said...

I have had to hide a few people from my news feed, because I've experienced some of what Aurora has, with people you don't really care about posting things waaaaaay too often (and, it turns out, if I don't much like you in person, I'm probably not going to like you on fb).

But, I have also seen two friends from HS and one from college when they've passed through town (and one who lives here!). I've also had a few near miss visits. I otherwise would have had no idea they were in town, and they'd have no idea where I lived. These make it worthwhile to me. . .

Kate said...

For me the best thing about FB the ability of status updates and posted articles to let me keep up with people I don't see much, but do enjoy. However, I wouldn't think to send them an email with most of the stuff I post. So I end up having silly facebook conversations about paying off student loans, the new Harry Potter movie, the most recent Washington Post Editorial or whatever. I think that makes me feel more in touch with them so when I swing through there town I'm more likely to say "Hey lets coffee" since it's not like I've totally out of touch for ages.

Plus, as a 35 year old single woman who is sometimes bummed she doesn't have kids, there is a certain joy in the fact that my facebook status is never about other people's bodily functions or trips to the ER to remove things from noses or ears.