Hiding People

When I was discussing with various people the statistics about kids friending people on Facebook they didn’t directly know (and sometimes even indirectly), another topic arose.  I started hearing from people about the “friends” they had friended on Facebook, but now hid because they couldn’t stand to read their status updates.  OUCH.

When pressed as to why hide when you could just “de-friend”, the overwhelming sentiment was that they didn’t want to hurt the other person’s feelings.  Also, it seemed that a lot of hidden people were actually relatives.  Hmmm.  Maybe “friending” isn’t the right term for it.  However…

Why hide?

  • politics
  • perfect Mommy syndrome
  • too many pictures
  • inane content
  • too much bragging
  • boring
I guess I thought this was the point of Facebook — to let others know what was on your mind.  I think we all have the capacity to be any one of these things. To my mind, it’s all about keeping people in the loop of your life, sharing woes, and (hopefully) getting some comfort.
But then there were the more real reasons.  These are harder to deal with because they hurt the ego and make one question one’s relationships.  These are the status updates that indicate:
  • “You” weren’t really sick, busy, out of town, etc.  You just blew me off.
  • The kissy-kissy relation between two people who were allegedly enemies
  • Reading updates that run counter to what you know about the person in real life
  • Realizing you weren’t invited
They say familiarity breeds contempt, which would explain the first set of hiding people.  The second set though are people who are hurt and feel betrayed.  Perhaps it was easier for them before technology made it abundantly clear they weren’t the priority they were hoping to be.
Maybe there is something to be said for being a Luddite.

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