Thursday, September 29, 2011

Did Facebook Just Change Social Networking Forever?

 “…Zuckerberg had two major pieces of news to share. First, he announced that Facebook is replacing its Profile — the page each user gets that displays his or her status updates, Likes, photos, FarmVille triumphs and other items — with a radically-revised version called the Timeline, which is rolling out over the next few weeks.”
This thing is all over the place.  This news about the imminent change to facebook.  It’s everywhere.  Now, I’m not saying I’ve read every article, every post, every comment about this change, but I’ve read enough to get the gist.  And from what I can tell, it’s getting fairly favorable press.  I don’t know.  Maybe it’s me.  Maybe I’m just getting old…but, these changes I find a bit unsettling.

If you’ve read anything about what all this entails, it shakes out like this:  Your Profile will evolve into your Timeline.  And everything that you’ve ever posted on Facebook is gonna be “out there”.  Hanging out there like a…well, a certain part of the male anatomy…in the wind.  Which, may or may not be a big deal.  I mean, the shit you’ve posted is already “out there”.  It’s just semi-sorta-buried.  Thrown aside and forgotten about.  Like this god awful picture of me:

Yea.  It’s still out there.  But you gotta dig for it.  And, granted, once in awhile, the Pope of Cookietown will go out of his way to bump it, much to my chagrin.  And after a few days, after everyone has had their kicks, the pic fades back into obscurity.  But now?  This stupid fucking picture is going be easy access, for the Pope and my other 13 friends.  Point is?  Although we fool ourselves thinking this shit (Weird…I just noticed that “this” and “shit” have all the same letters in them. WTF is that called again?) is “gone”, it’s not.  And now we don’t even have the comfort of fooling ourselves its gone.  Nope.
But…you wanna know what’s even more frightening than people having instant access to a bad picture of you from high school?  It's this “frictionless” integration of apps facebook has put together.  First of all…can we drop the whole “frictionless” buzz word?  It’s stupid.  And every time I read it, I feel a little throw up in my mouth. 
What makes this whole prospect scary?  It's the one time user agreement you sign up for when you download any particular app.  I know.  I know.  I know what you’re thinking.  You’re thinking:  What the fuck does that mean?  And why do I care?  Well, that means if you agree to load an app on your FB profile timeline, everything you do will show up on your timeline.  Which depending on your security levels (You know what yours are set to, right?  Rightttttttt!), everyone will see that you’re watching Land Before Time 6 for the 700th time.  Or that you’re listening to Wilson Philips…again (Some day somebody's gonna make you want to turn around and say goodbye. Until then baby are you going to let them hold you down and make you cry? Don't you know?  Don't you know things can change?  Things'll go your way.
If you hold on for one more day.  Can you hold on for one more day?  Things'll go your way.  Hold on for one more day).  In real time.  Yes…real time.
Maybe in the big picture it’s kinda stupid to care if people know what you’re watching/listening to while you’re watching/listening to it.  I don’t know.  It just seems we’re opening a door here.  Awww…who am I foolin’?  If anything…it seems like we’re opening the door even wider.  Revealing way too much about ourselves.  Can’t we keep some things a secret?  Can’t we keep things a little romantic between us?  Why does everything have to be super high def?  There’s something to be said about a little distance and a little Vaseline on the camera lens.  Do you really need to see every one of my puss filled pores?
And look, I say all these things now and my Timeline hasn’t even rolled out yet.  I mean, I could really love the changes they’ve made to FB.  It wouldn’t be the first time Past Jman totally stuck his foot in his mouth.  Four weeks from now, Future Jman will probably be editing the shit out of this article, cause he totally can’t get enough of the new and improved FB.

Doubt it.
Cause in the words of the immortal Obi-wan Kenobi, Han Solo, Anakin Skywalker, Luke Skywalker, C3PO and Leia Organa…I’ve got a bad feeling about this.

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