Facebook. The nightmare that won’t go away. Even the name gives me the heebie-jeebies. Let’s break it down.
“Face.” Bingo! Right out of the gate they reach in for the jugular and pull the ripcord hard. So we know straight up this isn’t exactly going to be the most subtle experience around. The face is the one part of myself I hate the most. Don’t look at me! I am an animal!
“Book.” They want you to think tomes here. As in a dusty librarian gettin’ all up in the grill of knowledge. That’s what they want you to think. That it’s a noun. In actuality, however, it’s a verb. An ominous motherfucking verb. As in: “Make an official record of the name and other personal details of (a criminal suspect or offender).”
Check it: People who use Facebook are voluntarily lining up like pigs to the slaughter to check themselves into jail. Fact: The original name proposed for Facebook was Lemmings-R-Us.
No wonder Facebook is in the news so often.
Now you must poke the jump if you ever hope to find your way to the like button for this post.
If you can get one-seventh of the world to use your website that’s a remarkable achievement. Just like in level 42 of Farmville when you earned an item called “bacon” that can be used in your “skillet” to create a buff called “splatter.” Suddenly life is worth living. We all know the meaning of life is to use your God-given gifts for good. Who said you can’t have a little fun along the way? The Facebook/Farmville tandem on it’s own can satisfy everything that a human should be.
Tom’s Law #42
Incredible popularity is not enough for a web-based service. You also have to monetize the fuck out of that shit.
At face value a service like Facebook has innumerable actual benefits and a certain amount of “fun.” But once you insert the need before greed component the beneficial aspects fly out the window.
Like most things in life there are pros and cons to Facebook. We’ve all heard the stories about people who got fired from their jobs for the mistaken belief that they had something known as “freedom of speech” in this country. (Not to split hairs, but you actually do have that right. You also have the companion right which is the right to be unemployed.)
On the other hand, Facebook has proven to be invaluable tool for catching criminals. A certain kind of criminal who updates his status with messages like, “I overturned that cop car last night and set it on fire. Man, what a riot! I’m also attaching a pic of me on said cop car with a nice clear shot of my face so you’ll know it’s me.” Police call these “confessions.” Never underestimate my love of stupid criminals.
Another exciting development (covered previously on this blog) is when employers began using Facebook as a recruitment tool. It only made sense to take a little peak at what an idiot would publicly and voluntarily reveal about themselves in a process known as self-booking. Yes, that’s exactly what it sounds like. “Book ‘em, Danno!”
“I’m sorry, miss. After careful review we do not feel that your skills will be a good fit. The ability to balance a full tankard of ale atop your breasts is impressive, though. You may not have the job but you can walk out of here with your head held high and my adoration. Be a sport and accept my friend request.”
At my last job the owner (ostensibly a happily married man and devout Christian) purloined an image from his new office manager’s Facebook account. The first thing us chickens knew about our new boss was that the owner thought she was hawt. We knew this because he distributed a sexy image of her buns and legs to all of the male employees before her first day of work. How’s that for supporting your employees? Personally I think it was sexist he didn’t CC: his female employees via the office email system. What a pig.
This is the same boss who found out about something on another female employee. She had made the classic error of friending a boss. When he learned from Facebook that she might be pregnant he naturally confronted her about it the very next morning. When she denied it he fired her for “lying.” It turned out she was never pregnant. Oops. Too bad, so sad. Bosses gonna boss, yo.
Employers are being fed information from studies in the news that Facebook can be a more accurate predictor of future performance on the job than traditional approaches like resumés, employment applications, and the time-honored practice of expending actual shoe leather to check references. That’s all too much work. Check their Facebook and see if they share our “values.” Do they list their religion? No? Skip ‘em and move to the next. We only want to hire one of us. No photo? Next!
Two new Facebook trends of have caught my ever-perceptive eye.
We already knew that company power trumps (aka takes a shit on) employee freedom of speech rights. Recently I learned of a sheriff’s deputy was fired by his boss, the sheriff, after the guy pressed “like” on the sheriff’s opponent during an election. “He clicked the ‘like’ button. Read him his rights.” Don’t worry. These days it’s a very short list.
You might think that due to all sorts of bullshit like this (and more!) that it might be better just to say, “Fuck it,” and delete your Facebook account. Throw in the towel and find some other way to keep in touch with friends. Other ways do exist, you know. That might be a bad idea, though.
Perhaps more alarming, is the recently news bubble that not having a Facebook is now seen as “suspicious.” It turns out that some dudes who grabbed guns and wasted lots of innocent people didn’t have Facebook accounts, either. Luckily the media is there to knee-jerk and make the obvious connection that if you don’t have a Facebook account, you must be a homicidal psychopath, too.
Always an inventive sort, I’ve decided to take the idea and run with it. I’m pleased to introduce my lastest entrepreneurial enterprise.
Facebook Veneer Specialists
We are a job placement/personal reputation firm that specializes in maintaining a Facebook accounted carefully crafted to meet your personal and professional goals in this life. Our specialists will interview you and then create, using your very own likeness, a Facebook page that will fool even the best headhunters and human resources specialists around. The tapestry we’ll weave of your faux existence will be carefully designed around your chosen field. Each industry is different so we’ll populate your timeline with tasty nuggets that no recruiter will be able to resist.
Our operators are standing by. Not using their real names, of course. That’s the beauty of the system. Only by lying about every possible detail can we be assured that the best, brightest and most qualified people are not in the jobs that they were never supposed to have. Or something like that.
Only by maintaining a totally fake Facebook account will you be safe from termination from asshole employers and have your best shot at getting the job you really want.
This is the part where you click ‘like’ you filthy animals. -Ed