Facebook Fakes. Bring it on
Last week, Facebook announced that 8.7% or 83 million accounts are fake. The fake accounts range from spoofs, to pets to secondary accounts for people who it would seem have yet to discover Second Life. To be honest, I am not sure if the announcement from Facebook is an admission of error, or an extremely savvy new marketing initiative secretly designed to get more people engaged on the site which has seen its value drop from $45 a share at the time of its IPO last March to less than $20 at the close of business on Friday.
Clearly, Facebook is losing steam. And I for one believe that it’s because when it comes right down to it, nobody cares. Nobody cares that your dog sleeps with his head on your pillow. Nobody cares that you just got a latte at Starbucks. And nobody cares what celebrity you’re following or what shows you’re watching. Wait…let me correct that. It’s not that nobody cares. It’s that only YOU care. Facebook, if it was an actual place versus a virtual one, would be a party where everyone is walking around holding a mirror up to his or her face while trying to talk to other people. Never before has the expression, “That’s enough about you, let’s talk about me” been more apt.
Facebook has succeeded in disconnecting the human sense of humility and tact. Instead, it has not just encouraged, but by its very structure, demanded that we don’t just talk about ourselves, but actually brag. Look at Timmy feed a horse. Look at me on my expensive vacation. Read this article that, although I actually haven’t read it, makes me look pretty smart because I’m sending it to you. Frankly, I think that nothing could be better for Facebook than a little dose of non-reality. For once, I’d like to see a post on Facebook that was interesting to read and not a dull chronicle of someone’s life which is really only interesting to them.
Twitter, while full of its own inadequacies has at least gotten that right. Who can forget the tweets from the snake that escaped from the Bronx Zoo? Or the Darth Vader and Jesus Christ Twitter accounts. I don’t know about you but that stuff is far more interesting than the people who can’t stop telling me that they ordered a latte or went to yoga. So instead of being shocked or disappointed by the Facebook Fakes, let’s celebrate it. At least it might give us something more interesting to read.