Monday, August 13, 2007

Has Facebook gotten too grandiose?

When I signed up for Facebook, I thought - "Wow, cool! I can keep up with friends, find people I haven't talked to or seen in a while....." I also appreciated that you can post unlimited pictures. Just an all around decent social application. Then I started getting requests to add all these extra applications. I went along with it until I realized I was taking an online application that was using up some of my online time and evolving it into using up a great deal of my online time - with nothing extra to show for it except the ability to lick, throw bombs at, review movies for, tattoo, IM or get the horoscopes for people.

Pass. I've uninstalled pretty much all the extra applications and left Facebook as clean as the driven snow. About the only application (that don't ship with Facebook by default) I like is iLike. Call me old fashioned.


Rob said...

Call a paranoiac Luddite if you will, but the data mining possibilities of Facebook are pretty incredible. When you add an externally-written application, you grant that app (and hence its owner) the ability to also tap into your Facebook world. Given that many apps are written by college students, etc., I'm not so sure I'm keen on adding many apps either (also considering that the ability to have a virtual food fight with my friends has limited appeal).

Stableboy said...

I have to admit I don't get the appeal of Facebook. I assume this means I'm completely unhip. I have an account, a few friends... but then what? What exactly would bring me back to the site after creating the account?

Alas, I know this pegs me as an old geezer.

Karl Plesz said...

I know exactly what you mean. I've thought about it for a while and then realized something rather bizarre. Facebook makes it possible to observe the lives of your friends without interacting with them (as much). It's like your friends become subjects in this huge reality web site..... if that makes any sense. All you need is their permission to watch. Is this analysis weird?

Rob said...

I was an old geezer / Luddite myself until recently, and I still regard Facebook suspiciously from time to time.

On the plus side, I have found it to be a good way to reconnect with old friends and colleagues, and to keep in touch with people who live in other places. As long as they are periodically on the system, I seem to get a better sense of what's going on than I would via email messages. Getting together for periodic beers just isn't feasible with everybody whose lives I am still interested in, so on that level it's a nice thing.