Sunday, December 07, 2008

Facebook and me.

After much hesitation, and going beyond my fear of leaving too much information out on the Web, I finally decided to register to the social network Facebook.
It's actually been more fun than I had anticipated.

On the bright side, it allows you to re-connect with old friends, and then stay in touch with the mundane things of your friends' lives - something that is more important than is usually admitted in relationships. It is entertaining and even a lot of fun at times....It is especially important when you have friends on the other side of the world.

On the darker said, I don't like the fact that people can only be your "friends" (or not) and nothing else What about "acquaintances"? And then, there seems to be a lot of competition for some people about how many friends they have, which is really stupid since they don't even know most of those people. This loose acceptance of the word "friend" is definitely an American phenomenon where even people you barely know often qualify as "friends", but at the risk of being too French about it, I think some hierarchy or some priority is necessary in relationships.

Then of course, there is the risk that all your data on Facebook might be used some day by some evil doer - some government checking on you, some company trying to sell you things... Facebook has a lot of information on you after all. and then you hear all sorts of scary stories... (like this guy who lied to his boss , called in sick, and was fired because he put pictures of his partying and some nice colleague told) but a lot of those things can happen in the "real" world too...
And then most of the info you leave on Facebook is somewhere on the web anyway - whenever you registered to something and left too luch information on the questionnaire.

I may be a bit on the naive side of things, but I don't want to be too paranoid and it seems to me that as long as you watch for what you write and share, then you're probably ok. and of course, you need to restrict your profile only to your friends. As a (local) public figure (a teacher always is), I must be particularly careful.
The risk is that you might say too much or that, when you exchange with a close friend, you forget that no-so close friends are also watching and reading you.

So for now, I'm going to keep it this way and if it turns out that I can't take it, I'll delete everything and un-register.


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