Seriously. Every time.
New feature request
I’m mostly joking here, but it wouldn’t be the worst idea.
A baby photo is just another piece of content that’s really common to see in a Facebook feed these days. And just like I can say “I don’t want to see game invites from anyone” or “I don’t want to see any photos from Steve in particular”, I’d like to be able to say “I don’t want to see any babies” or “I don’t want to see any babies posted by Stephanie.” Maybe I’m not in a baby mood, or maybe Stephanie’s just got an ugly baby. But it’s metadata, and that helps people find new stuff they like and avoid stuff they don’t.
Which would mean that if this became a thing, there’d be actions next to every photo like “Flag as baby.” And the following prompt would go “Is this a baby?” and you’d click either “Yes, it’s a baby” or “False alarm, it’s just a bald old man.”
And of course this could apply to other posts that people complain about. For example, I post dog photos because I have dogs and I like my dogs. But if you hate dogs, then fine, let me label my dog photos as dog photos. That way I can find my dog photos better, and you don’t have to look at my dogs. And of course, more flagging options: “Flag as dog?” -> “Yes, that’s a dog” or “Never mind, it’s just a brown wig.”
And before anyone recommends it: I tried Unbaby.me, the browser plugin that hides baby photos, and it’s very clever. It uses an amazing list of keywords, not some sophisticated photo detection algorithm, so it’s really only catching photos where someone wrote a caption like “This is my big boy!” or “My little princess!” It’ll also block any post that uses the word “toesies” which is just perfect.
Meanwhile, on the Birds Eye Vegetables Facebook page:
Susan is leaving a comment about green beans for Susan, and the only person who likes it is herself (Susan). What.
What’s happening here? Are we all watching this Facebook admin have a very confusing conversation with herself? Just, what the hell, people.
Also, I’ve started leaving aggressively stupid comments on Birds Eye’s Facebook posts. Partly because it’s horribly condescending, and partly because my last name is actually Birdseye and I wonder if people will think I’m somehow affiliated with the company. (Of course, I’m not, but my great grandfather did found the company.)
Every fan page post is an opportunity to leave a really stupid comment to amuse yourself.
(FYI Thief is a game, not a dude.)
My friend just posted a status on Facebook. It was clearly his girlfriend who posted it, but she posted it under his name. She probably just went on his computer, and he was still signed in, so she posted this cute little message as him:
My girlfriend is the bomb. I love her. I will get her coffee in the morning. I will rub her feet. Whatever she desires, I’m there.
And I think that’s fine. I think newer couples do that. It shows that they’re spending more time together. Maybe they have a strong enough relationship now where it’s okay that she violate his trust just a little bit, just to make this little “My girlfriend is the best” post on his account. I realize that this is probably just a way for her to tell him she likes him.
I also realize that I could fuck everything up for him by commenting, “Which one?”
I just want to change the world with this money. I could donate it to a charity, but what is a charity, really? A bunch of strangers who give your money to even more strangers? No thank you! I only deal with first-degree strangers!
Have any of you see the Facebook meme about the lottery winner that’s been going around for the last 2 days? Basically it’s a grainy webcam photo of a bearded white guy holding a winning Mega Millions ticket. The caption reads, “This dude actually won and hes planin on splittin a little with anyone who shares his update sooo im sharing.” It is the stupidest thing I have ever seen. It’s also been shared tens of thousands of times.
So, last night I took a crappy webcam photo of myself holding a blank check, then photoshopped some fake information onto it, and wrote the above post about a lottery winner who wants to share his money with total strangers. It’s all deliberately absurd. I talk about flying to people’s houses on a jet, and I brag about owning a laser printer. The zeros on the check run onto my hand, and the check itself is signed by Barack Obama.
And people still aren’t getting it.
Which is fine, I guess? There’s something sweet about people wanting all of this stuff to be real. It reminds me of little kids believing in Santa, only this time it’s grown adults, and Santa is a sneaky jpeg. Either way, both parties should be able to verify whether it’s a hoax or not. (Hey CHILDREN, it’s called GOOGLE. ASKJEEVES IT.)
Anyway, I’ve made a public Facebook post on Slacktory that’s very similar to the original hoax photo. You can share it if you want, ideally with a caption like “oh man i hope its true!!!” Consider it an experiment: Will your friends get the joke, or will they pass it along without realizing the check’s memo says, “Won real lottery”?
Two Things: Moments when Facebook told me that people don’t change
1) The Sometimes Friend
I went to elementary school with a dude named Bill. Bill was odd in that he’d be your friend one week, and the next he wouldn’t talk to you. By middle school, he’d moved away. Up until then, I thought Bill’s behavior was specific to me until a friend said, “Remember Bill? That dude was a total fairweather friend.” Others agreed. Bill was weird like that with everyone, apparently.
So when he sent me a friend request on Facebook a couple years ago - nearly a decade later - I accepted. Whatever, dude. Water under the bridge, right? Good to be Internet friends with you. Can’t wait to go through your vacation photos for no reason.
According to Facebook, his girlfriend went to the same college as me, so it’s possible he found me because she and I were in the same network. Apparently, he was going to another college nearby. Weeks had passed since he added me, so one day I figured I’d send him a message and ask if he was ever in town. If he’s around, then why not get a beer or something, right?
But then I couldn’t get to his profile to send him a message. Because he had unfriended me.
For no reason, I’d guess. We hadn’t even corresponded with each other yet. Disappointing, but not surprising, I guess. Should’ve seen it coming.
2) Social Makeup Girl
I went to high school with a girl named Regina. Regina was pretty, and hung with the popular crowd. She always wore makeup to the point where you noticed, “hey, she’s wearing makeup,” but she was nice. She was quiet, but I got the idea she might be party girl outside of school. (Isn’t that what you assume the popular crowd does outside of school? Go to drunken parties all the time?) I don’t think she was necessarily a shallow person, but my interactions with her were always short and polite, lacking any real substance, and I was cool with that.
Flash forward 9 years later, and she’s sending me a Facebook friend request. And guess what? We have over 75 friends in common. Over seventy-five! Wow! You’d think we were good friends, given that number! Whoa!
I click through to her profile pictures and in a few of them, she’s wearing so much makeup she kinda looks like The Joker. (But, like, a sexy, partying Joker? Is that a thing?) Either way, nobody in the last 9 years had sat her down and told her that the point of makeup isn’t for people to think “Wow, she’s wearing a lot of makeup!” But whatever. My point is, the makeup thing was not a high school phase. It was a lifestyle, apparently.
And, while I don’t think that a Facebook friendship is a sacred bond built on trust and mutual admiration, I still think it’s a kind of a dick move to send out friend requests to everyone you vaguely recognize. So, imagine how pleasantly surprised I was when Regina had included a personal message with her Facebook friend request!
I opened the friend request email, and it said this:
Regina wants to be friends with you on Facebook.
[Thumbnail image of her smiling, super-tanned face]
Regina says, “Include a personal message…”.
How sweet. She somehow sent me the default message text that’s supposed to disappear as soon as you click inside the personal message form field.
I wondered, did she send that same message to the other 75 people that we share as friends, or was I special? Was she maintaining our tradition of being vaguely aware of each other while she stayed pretty and I stayed judgmental on the Internet, or did it just work out that way? Sometimes it’s reassuring to know that things don’t change.
When new moms use photos of their kids as their profile photos, they tell little stories.
For example, in this status update, it looks like this baby made herself oatmeal and is eating it all by herself. However, the baby has an important place to be! This baby has appointments! And now this baby is probably using her chubby baby hands to hold a little spoon shaped like an airplane and shovel oatmeal into her mouth, but the oatmeal’s too hot and she’s going to be late! This makes the baby so mad she gets out her tiny laptop and types out a Facebook status update while blowing on her hot oatmeal with her little baby mouth! UGH!!!
I don’t care what you’re actually selling; if your ad features a man with a stunning mustache, I am going to assume you are selling something mustache-related.
The above ad was originally for a database school or something. The man in the ad probably majored in mustaches. His final project? Grow a great mustache. And then the bonus is that his diploma is also a mustache and that he wears the diploma on his face all the time.
Dear Random Ladies Sending Me Friend Requests on Facebook,
I don’t know who you are if your profile pic is just a photo of your kids. That is weird. You are not your kids. Genetically, they’re half you, but I don’t look at your kids and think, “oh yeah, those kids look like half of some girl I knew 10 years ago.”
Consider including a personal message in the future so you aren’t just filling people’s inboxes with photos of random kids. “Hey, I heard you like kids. Here is an invitation to be my friend, featuring a photo of some kids you don’t know.” Hey, lady, you are mistaken. You think a grown-ass man wants to look at unlabeled kid photos? For all I know you could have bought some stock photography of kids and set that up as your Facebook profile pic. And who wants to be friends with that person? You just paid money for kid photos. You are the worst.
Unless you got into some disfiguring accident and your face was replaced with two children, what you’re doing is inappropriate. And if your face is, in fact, two children posing on a pillow, then maybe you should include a little note about that so you don’t seem so rude.
I hope this helps,
Sometimes Facebook ads use some stupid stock photography. Your ad is for a degree in database management so you show me a dude with two laptops? Now he just looks like Dr. Laptops, a man who got his PhD in Having Lots of Computers.