Fifty years from now, we will look back and undoubtedly remember the greatest invention of our time. No, it’s not cloning, the iPod Nano, or even Gogurt. It is an innovation that surpasses all others. It is Facebook.
Facebook is such a widespread phenomenon that it is not constricted by parts of speech. “To Facebook” has become a verb. Walking in the quad, I hear the term used repeatedly: to “Facebook” someone is to look up a person at thefacebook.com site in order to view that person’s picture and judge them to no end.
TheFacebook.com has revolutionized popularity as we know it. Hanging out with seven of your friends at the Barge shows that you know people. But having 192 Facebook friends means you’re the epitome of popularity. Who cares if you only know 32 of them personally? A Facebook friend is a friend ’til the end.
Being accepted as someone’s friend means you’re in that person’s inner circle of trust. Facebook friends have given us access into their personal lives and innermost secrets: majors, hobbies, and – if you’re lucky – political views. Now if that’s not trust, I don’t know what is.
Even if you’re not into Facebook for the friends and enormous amount of popularity, it has plenty of other uses. What better way to stalk that hot guy or girl from your Challenge of Modernity class than to memorize his or her Facebook profile? That way, when you pass them at the Coop, you can quote lines from their favorite movies, or hum their favorite songs.
For other Facebook fanatics, Facebook is a way of putting a face with last night’s drunken fling. Before waking up roommates to tell them about a wild night, some head straight to Facebook to answer troubling questions, like “What was his name and what does he look like?” More often than not, the picture doesn’t match the face as remembered. Nonetheless, Facebook has come to the rescue time and again, filling that void in our memories on weekend mornings. What would people do without the security of knowing that they can look up their hook-up the morning after?
And even though it is known that all the cool kids are on Facebook there are still some, myself included, who believe they belong to the “Too Cool for Facebook Club.” We boycott it, claiming we are making a statement, but are really just insecure about the number of friends that would accept us. After all, in the Facebook world, friends are like gold. It is sad to think that we will go on living such a miserable life, friendless in a world of camaraderie and intimate Facebook connections.
Those smart enough to join are taking advantage of the greatest invention of our day. Not only does Facebook provide us with answers, security and a distraction from work, it brings us closer to the rest of the Colgate community and our fellow man. I might even hop on the bandwagon and make some BFFF – Best Facebook Friends Forever.