I like Facebook as much as the next guy. Oh come on, Mark Zuckerberg’s invention rocks — it’s the social networking phenomenon that everyone loves to hate, but secretly loves. Okay cool, I accept that when faced with friendship requests from strangers coming at you like Genghis Khan’s marauders, that things can get pretty hairy. To accept or not accept, that is the virtual question.
Annoying Facebookers are divided into several categories. Here are a few, in my experience, that can drive a Zen Buddhist to serious annoyance.
1. The Attention Seeker. There’s a modus operandi with this Facebook addict. Seconds after you press the ‘Confirm’ icon, and befriend him, he will ‘Poke you’, tag his name with everything in your photo list, tag your name with everything in his, throw sheep at you, demand to play Farmville, ‘share’ everything you post, comment on everything you say and send requests to all your friends. He is your virtual stalker.
2. The Couch Potato. This guy puts Garfield to shame in sheer laziness. He also has a limited vocabulary. So he tells you in two words when he is sitting, snoozing, snoring, shaving, showering, snacking or surfing. Invariably, his profile picture is a body part in repose. He takes the term home page very seriously. He’s always home.
3. Mr Anonymous. He doesn’t want to reveal his true identity. So he’ll call himself something cheesy like, ‘Life Sucks’ or ‘Love On The Rocks’. His profile picture can vary, making him a fascinating case study for psychoanalysts. Mr Anonymous may represent himself as a pet poodle (no not a Great Dane, a poodle). Or he may profile himself with Marilyn Monroe’s face on Rambo’s muscled torso. Yup, this guy doesn’t want to reveal anything about himself. Or is just unable to.
4. The Proverbial Prophet. Facebook is this person’s pulpit, his private dais. He wants to bless you, convert you, heal you and absolve you of all your sins. He will send you blessings of every conceivable prophet, including himself. You will be posted religious sayings, spiritual proverbs and asked to join all sorts of prayer groups. This person could seriously convert you to aetheism.
5. The School Idiot. One of the joys of FB is bonding with old school ‘chaddi buddies’. But the School Idiot takes the cake — he’s invariably that one batchmate you mercilessly bullied and ostracised in school — but now, thirty years later, he’s back for revenge. He’ll let you know that his life has soared way above yours — both personally and professionally — he now has a fab American wife, three fab kids, lives in a fab condor in Washington D.C and is Obama’s fab advisor on India. He’s relentless in his thirst for vengeance — He’ll post photos of you two together, on school camps, when you were ten kilos lighter, followed by a photoshopped picture of him and the US Prezzie. The School Idiot is your worst board exam, years after graduation.
Okay, gotta go. I have 43 pending friendship requests to attend to, 111 messages to answer and 160 photographs to post. I just created my own category of annoying Facebooker — I am the Serial Exhibitionist. Will you accept me as your friend ?
Rahul da Cunha is an adman, theatre director/playwright, photographer and traveller. Reach him at email@example.com
The views expressed in this column are the individual’s and don’t represent those of the paper.