Wednesday, October 6, 2010

My Social Network

I went to see The Social Network yesterday. For those of you living under a rock, this is the movie about the creation of Facebook. It was good. Damn good. The writing was whip smart and the acting was unbelievable. The fact that it is based on a true story is a very compelling element. Of course, from what I understand large swathes were taken not from actual accounts but from writers interpretations of what likely occurred at known events, but that is to be expected.

After the movie, Jill and I sat at a deli enjoying fantastic pastrami sandwiches and cream soda while we dissected the movie. One thing we kept coming back to was just how significantly Facebook has changed the way we interact.

I was a late comer to Facebook. I joined about two years ago. I had heard of it before, but I resisted. At the time, I had been blogging for about 8 months and felt that was all the online interaction I needed. But my 16th* high school reunion was coming up and it was the easiest way to connect with former classmates leading up to our get together.

At first it was people I was current with and those high school classmates I was trying to get in touch with for the reunion. But it pretty quickly evolved into a self-indulgent trip down memory lane. I looked up people I haven't seen since grade school. I'll confess there are a couple of ex-boyfriends in there. But only the friendly ones.

Sometimes I think that we're supposed to lose touch with people. That maybe there is a reason you don't talk anymore to that girl you ran around with for a couple of months when you were 20. And that snarking at photos of your ex-boyfriend's ugly wife is mean and unnecessary.

But for the most part, I love Facebook. I can't imagine life without it. I love that it allows me to passively follow a large number of friends on an everyday basis. I love that I can interact or not, at my discretion, and no one will criticize me either way. I love that I can disseminate information about myself and my family so easily.

There is little doubt that it has changed things. Like all of the greats, it was an invention I didn't even realize I needed until it was so entrenched in my life that I couldn't imagine operating without it. But that brings up the inevitable question: What is the next step? What will be the next Facebook?

I wish I could invent it.

Have you seen the movie? What did you think? Are you on Facebook? Love it? Hate it?

*We also had an 11th reunion. Not sure what, if any, plans there are for future reunions but I have full confidence they will NOT fall on the usual years.


  1. I am on FB, though I waffle back and forth about how much I love/hate it. It is a fun tool, and I like how easy it is to chat with people for a brief minute here and there.

  2. Have not seen the movie... would like to, but don't know if I'll make it while it's still in theaters.

    I'm on FB... well, maybe I should just say I have a FB account. I hardly use it.

  3. I saw it. Thought it was good. That opening break up seen was fantastic. Probably my favorite part.

  4. I am interested in seeing this movie.

    I too joined Facebook late and I am still not impressed. I high school was a very painful time for me so I have yet to find or be friended by any those people.

    So that being said, give me blogging and twitter for my social media.

  5. I haven't seen the movie, but I am on Facebook. I was on for awhile, caught a virus, quit, then rejoined this year. It is fun as long as you have self-control and don't fall into the time suck of the games and "villes".

    But Blogging is still my first love.

  6. I'm just jealous that you and Jill saw the movie together! How awesome. Next time I am in D.C. we are all going out, okay? Cool.
    Anyway, I LOVED The Social Network - LOVED IT. Want to see it again, actually. And I have been on facebook since... wow. I guess 3 and a half years? Maybe more? I love facebook and I love Twitter even more. :)

  7. I am on facebook and I find it very ... useful and an incredible time soak.

  8. Easy there with the "under the rock" comment, remember you had to tell me last week about this movie? :) I think FB is neat, even though I was resistant at first. I think I see what you're saying, these inventions make information so readily available, there is almost nothing we cannot know. Its a bit scary. Sometimes the past belongs in the past.

    Another thought (unrelated) is about cyber bullying. Wasn't bullying bad enough when we were kids? Now kids can bully for the whole world to see. Scarier.

  9. I am on FaceBook and I love it. I love keeping up with friends and family... having moved quite a few times it's so nice to be able to stay in touch. I'm TRYING to get back into Twitter.. we'll see... But, like Heather, blogging is still where it's at for me, simply because it's the only one where I can go back and see what's happened in the past....

  10. Melinda and I have not seen the movie but want to. I was a late comer to Facebook also and even after I was on FB I didn't use it for a while and just recently started trying to use it on a daily basis.

  11. I actually want to see this movie. There's not many that get my interest, but this one does. I'm pretty new to FB too and I totally agree with all your thoughts here. VERY well said!

  12. I have not seen the movie, but, thanks to your recommendation, I will make the time to do that.
    I am on Facebook and I love it. For all those reasons. And I am addicted to the stinking games, but, hey, I could be addicted to a lot worse things.

  13. it.

    Cream it.

    Next? Who knows!!??!! Skype is pretty awesome though.

  14. I'd love to see The Social Network, but realistically, I'll have to wait for pay-per-view!

    I think you know that I LOVE facebook and profess to everyone that it improves the quality of my daily life. I think I could love Twitter if I didn't find it so confusing.

    Katie's point about cyberbullying is important though. The SAHMs and former grade school friends I have on FB don't tend to bully, but I can only imagine how many hurt feelings can be caused through FB for teens, tweens, etc.

  15. Cool. I haven't seen it, but it sounds interesting. I came even later than you -- a little more than a year ago. Now I think Facebook is like an online party!

  16. My class had an 11th and a 16th reunion, too! We never could get our shit together...

  17. I haven't seen the movie but I love Facebook. I don't friend anyone that I don't want to and keep my page visible to only friends. I go through my friends list every now & again to delete people who aren't active. These people irk me b/c it's like they just want to be nosey but not share of themselves.

    The only thing I don't care for that much is being friends with my stepdaughter and sister. They share their entire lives on there & it drives me bonkers.

  18. I joined FB about a year and a half ago. And I have mixed feelings about it. I like being able to keep in touch with people in other states, and family. But it makes me very uncomfortable how much some people share! One friend is going through a divorce and all the ugly details are right there for her 300 closest friends to see. I went through today actually and deleted about 20 people. Mostly people who joined and then never post, or people who friended me and then never said hi, never commented on my pictures, etc. If I haven't seen or thought of someone in over 20 years, I don't think I really need to be friends with them on FB, KWIM?

  19. The next great invention is to have a chip in your brain. Trust me. And I WILL BE that old fart that totally resists what all the young kids are doing and will NOT get a brain chip. No way. Not ME.


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