Wednesday, February 20, 2013

The Great Categorization

“Alas, eleventy-one years is far too short a time to live among such excellent and admirable hobbits.  I don't know half of you half as well as I should like, and I like less than half of you half as well as you deserve.” - Bilbo Baggins

Ah, Facebook.  I do not wish to deceive you, Gentle Reader, I love it.  I never suspected that I would; however, I do.  It’s a great way to communicate & share ideas, thoughts, events, photographs, & adventures with your friends.  Unfortunately, you also share this information with your, “Friends”, which are two entirely different things.  If you have tooled around Facebook and have acquired a list of people on your, “Friends” list you know what I mean.  “Friends” should be more accurately named, “Acquaintances”.  I have thousands of acquaintances in real life and a much smaller group of what I would truly call my friends.  It is inevitable that Social Media would mirror this simple equation.  I’m pretty sure that if you were to look at your Facebook “Friends” list that you too would come to a similar conclusion.

Now I’m not necessarily saying that I’ve tuned up the grouping on my list of “Friends” on Facebook but I would imagine such an experience would be cathartic.  Let’s face it, there’s a lot of flotsam and jetsam in Social Media or our Facebook pages.  Gentle Reader, don’t deny it.  Yes these people are your, “Friends” but it’s YOUR Facebook experience NOT theirs.  Wouldn’t it be nice to take it back - to trim the vines, so to speak?

If you wanted to thin the great head here’s how it’s done.  Go to your main page and click on “Friends”, (currently located to the left of the page) a whole new world opens - a world of lists, categories, & groups.  This would be where you get the option to put people into whatever grouping you so desire.  You can post to individual sections of your groupings by choosing the option button next to “POST” in the dialog box.  In the future this will insure that your message is delivered to the group that YOU want it to reach.

“But I have a bunch of “Friends” - how can I arrange them all?”

With patience, a pinch of honesty, & half of an imagination you can find here are some possible names for arranging you “Friends” by groups.

True Friends



Friends who post Pictures of Cats



Lunatic Fringe

Friends with Agendas

Friends who Believe Themselves to be Constitutional Scholars

Friends who are Zealots - Religious

Friends who are Zealots - Political

Friends who are Zealots - Other

Friends who Believe

Friends who Do Not Believe

Friends who Used to Believe

Friends who Kind of Believe in Something

Friends who Want to Believe

Friends from Assorted Schools

Who Are These People?

Of course, you can have cross-sections and sub-categories.  Say you have a narcissistic, gun-toting, acquaintance from high school, who believes that alien technology is responsible for all the “dangerous” leaps in technology that we’ve experienced over the last 25 years and that the only way to protect ourselves from the world is to secede from the Union and to destroy all those who stand in their way as they reshape the world in their own image.  As you can see, it’s possible to be in several groups and sub-categories at once.       

If I were to embark upon, “The Great Categorization” and I were to filter all my “Friends” into designated groups so that I could reach and/or speak to the groups that I wanted to communicate with when I wanted to communicate with them I must confess, that would be pretty cool.  I have a sneaking suspicion that my “True Friends” category would not only the most precious to me but also the least populated.

Just like in real life.

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