I heart Facebook, part 1

Here’s the main reason I love Facebook:

When we’re on Facebook, we’re mostly dealing with the mental realm. True, we see photos of people and things, but what connects us to our Facebook friends, especially the ones whom we’ve never personally met, are our common interests, our ways of thinking, the individual qualities we express and our way of expressing them. We connect through ideas rather than physical impressions.

In “real” life, sometimes a person’s physical appearance, gestures and proximity can unduly influence us. Not always, of course, but this is a lot less likely to happen on Facebook, where physical appearance takes second place to what we are sharing on a mental level.

Do you agree?



Filed under social media

13 responses to “I heart Facebook, part 1

  1. Jess L.

    My Facebook experience points up the difference between my American FB friends and my non-North American FB friends. The ones in the states tend to post much more about their day-to-day lives, happenings with spouses and children,etc. and rarely post music – poetry:never. The others? Well, I rarely know about spouses or families unless something dramatic happens: a new relationship, new baby, some catastrophe. And lots of music, some poetry, etc. The one true constant is animals: I connect with everyone on that level – their animals, my animals, other animals. Oh – and those who answer whether they are “interested” in men or women – I think North Americans see that question as asking if they are straight or gay, while others seem to take “interested in” as a more general, non-sexual question.

  2. On one hand I see the “physical” appearance as my friends’ posts. When these posts stop, I definitely miss their appearance – both physical & mental. I sense a void that was at one time more active with sharing.

  3. When my friends stop posting for whatever reason and I miss them, I often post something myself to get their attention…posting about FOOD usually works like a charm!

  4. Libby Unwin

    Think–if there was no Facebook we would not know each other at this time!! I get to see all my family or at least talk to them when I otherwise could not. I also connected with many of my classmates from high school which was fun Another side is that I am now in touch much more with my love of dogs and horses!! I have connected with several people who love both.

  5. I was just thinking about this today, Libby…all of this would have been practically impossible before Facebook, or at the very least, difficult!

    • I mean, think about it…if you wanted to get in touch with a long-lost relative or friend and you got their phone number and called them, it just wouldn’t be the same as being able to pop into FB any time – even every day – and say hi or have a casual chat. People just don’t do that on the phone!

  6. Dean Wolfe

    I think you’re right about the mental realm thing. It’s wild to even try to imagine what things will be like ten years from now after Facebook goes public. Google and fb and YouTube are my 3 fave sites. Mp3.com, when it was new and the web was really young, was an amazing Site for musicians. After it got sold it became something unrecognizable. I made some music connections that still remain, and it was around 1998 + or so….the way it was set up lots of indie musicians were making thousands of dollars a month just for lots of listens, no strings attached…

    • Dean, I didn’t now about Mp3.com…what a great opportunity for musicians! I know that CD Baby now offers licensing, so maybe there will be new opportunities for indie musicians like us.

  7. Thomas Moore

    Amy, I’m not sure I understand what you mean by the words “mental realm”. I daresay that all communication has a foot, if not more, in the mental realm, since ideas and words and thoughts are all formed there. And the so-called physical realm is not so far removed, since for us to experience it, it must be sent to the conscious mind to be processed. I don’t believe FB dictates to us how we communicate. I believe we choose to do as we choose to do, on FB and off. I’ve known you in person and on FB. I love you in both realms, and as much as I love to write, and I do love to write, and as much as I agree that the process of writing allows us a greater degree of editorial control over what comes out of our… (mouths, pens, keyboards – minds), I think I’d rather meet you at a coffee house and just hang. But since that is not really an option, me being in Columbus, Ohio and you being, where you are, I’m very grateful for FB.

    • Hi Tommy, all I meant by “mental realm” is that it’s not in the “physical realm,” that is, we don’t physically see our FB friends. And yes, we can have very loving and satisfying experiences in both realms, it’s true, but I especially like the “editorial” aspect of FB (and this is an individual thing, I know), because it helps me be less impulsive and more aware and thoughtful of other people’s thoughts and feelings.

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