Saturday

Unsocial Networking

"Oh my God, you don't have a facebook account?" She gave me a dirty look that spoke volumes about what she thought of my ignorance and anti-social behavior.
No, I don't, and I don't intend to start one up anytime soon either. I have to admit I tried MySpace for about a year, and recently Facebook for a couple of weeks. The two experiences were almost identical, boring, empty, and meaningless. All I did was stare at the profiles and pictures of "friends", and I use this term loosely. These "friends" never communicated with me, except for maybe a comment or two and I knew that I'll never end up meeting any of them. It seemed their only purpose behind adding me was to increase their "friends" count. Whatever happened to the good old-fashioned ways of picking up the phone, emailing, text messaging, or instant messaging a real friend? I can't speak much about Twitter or Orkut as I never even visited the sites, but I imagine they're all alike.

"Facebook helps you connect and share with the people in your life."
يساعدك فيس بوك على التواصل والتشارك مع كل الأشخاص في حياتك
Wow, so I can't connect with anyone I know unless I use Facebook? Or would Facebook help me get a better connection with those people? I beg to differ.
"As of today, 250 million people are using Facebook to stay updated on what's happening around them and share with the people in their lives..."
I must be some odd anti-social moron like the lady suggested. I mean what are the chances 250 million people can be wrong, and I'm right? I'm not sure. All I know is that these netwroking sites didn't serve any purpose for me, in particular, the purpose specified in their home pages.
I watched the 60 MINUTES interview with Mark Zuckerberg the 23 year old founder of Facebook (He looks 17 by the way). In case you didn't know, 60 minutes is the most watched and respected CBS news program in the USA. It aires every Sunday night. Mr. Zuckerberg couldn't crack a real smile and looked like one of those outcasts that couldn't muster any courage to talk to anyone in college. The company is worth 15 billion dollars, and he's personally worth over 3 billion. His response to the interviewer after stating these facts was that he still lives in a one bedroom apartment and sleeps on a matress on the floor. A lonely nerd that needed friends started that and the world followed. Welcome to the 21st century. It's all about money here. Facebook has been accused of using its subscribers' private information to sell ads. This social netwroking scam has been embeded in our brains as the next thing for the sole purpose of making money to the corporations that owns them. Yes ladies and gentlemen, they are owned by money-making American companies. This graphic was posted on MySpace homepage enticing new customers to sign up. I'll leave it up to you to figure out what kind of intended audience it was aimed at.

The next argument for using these services would be to aquire new "friends". Do we really need those so-called "friends"? Last time I was on MySpace I had over 50 "friends", and other than exchanging a few comments or a two-line email, there was hardly anything else to speak of. Most of the emails and the "friend" requests I got there lead to porn websites.

I have no doubt these networking sites can be useful to some busy people. The type of celebrities and politicians and media people can use it to update their fan base on a regular basis. But notice how I used the word fan in the previous statement. That's so far off from the intended purpose of staying in touch with friends. I don't think 250 million people belong to the category that can use Social Networking sites and benefit from them.


Why am I ranting and raving about social networking? Well, the service might do well in the American and western culture, but in our Syrian and Arabic societies there's just no use for it. It never seizes to amaze me how many bloggers are so devastated over Facebook being blocked in Syria. Others were also angry about president Asssad starting a Facebook page while it's still blocked back home. I'm not sure if a president ever has the time for this nonsense. I saw the page, and the pictures look authentic, but anyone could've started this page.

For now, I don't need Facebook or Twitter. I don't need MySpace or Orkut. I'm just happy with my little Blog sharing what I choose to.

9 comments:

أُمنيّة said...

so u added urself on syplanet aggregator.
lots of changes here, why did u change the "meen ana"'s introuduction? i think nothing can tell about u , more than your own words , don't u think?
and 7aram ana, my url is not here anymore..poor me.

i'd relate ur indifferent with these networking sites to ur age.
don't u think it's more shbablik sites.?

Sourie said...

Here I am even changing my response to your comment 3 times already. As you may know, I'm a newbie in this blogging world my dear. I'm trying to find my way around. Trial and error. I'll end up coming up with a final formula someday, but meanwhile, change is eminent. I took your link off since I haven't heard from you in a while. I thought you stopped blogging or something, but I'll be happy to work as an aggregator for you :). Your link is back up. You're right about the Ana Meen section. I'll change it when I find the right words. Welcome back.

أُمنيّة said...

wallah i have no idea why i'm still blogging.i'm totally bored with it and everything related to it.
it's like there are certain amounts of ideas and i've already poured them all out in the blog, and that's it.. there is nothing new around, we keep nagging about the same things,nothing is changing.
but y3ni ur blog looks promising,
u didn't have to readd the url, i was just "btsa2el" soon it won't be upgraded anymore.
and it's not about being 60 or 40, i had the same experince with fb and twitter , i was surprised when i first signed in it,that was like 3 years ago, i was like, why is the world making such a fuss about this?
and i stopped my accout.
out of nothing , i resigned like 2 months ago, i have no idea why.
it makes me laugh to see syrians making groups like "support Khawla " group..
i mean the little girl needed urgent operations, and what ppl could do here is joining groups.
and me myself feel the same stupidity, when i write about anything troubles me in syr, like th e last post i wrote about محمية الفرنلق , while writing the post i felt stipud, i think writing this post didn't help the forest in any mean, maybe renting a car and taking some of the trash out of the it would have helped more!
well that's how i see these networing sites , blogging , fb or whatever, virtually living.
that was long, and boring
enjoy it.

Sourie said...

رهف..إضربي هالطينة بالحيط، إذا مالزقت بتعلم
You're not going to see a result anytime soon, but it's still a good effort and a good start. We are very dirty as a nation when it comes to our public streets and land. We just don't care. I saw it a million times when I was home. I got mad at my own family for throwing trash on Kasyoon when we went there one night. I think your boredom has nothing to do with blogging. It seems you're bored with everything lately from what I read. I'm not trying to Psycho analyze you, but maybe you're missing something, a hobby, new friends.... I don't know. You know about yourself better than anyone else does. Please smile and be optimistic. Things always get better if there's a will. I was so depressed after I came back from Syria, still am actually, but life goes on, and I always try to find a reason to smile.Please don't tell me your blog won't be updated anymore :(. Despite differing with you on some key issues, I still enjoy reading it. I'll be looking forward to a new post from you.

Gabriela said...

I share every word you said here about Facebook and similar services. I signed up in Facebook, and quit 24 hours later. I never saw its point.
It is so nice to find someone who thinks the same way about this!

Anonymous said...

Dear Author www.anasourie.com !
Certainly. I agree with told all above.

Anonymous said...

Dear Author www.anasourie.com !
Idea excellent, it agree with you.

Anonymous said...

I want to quote your post in my blog. It can?
And you et an account on Twitter?

أنا سوري said...

Anonymous,
As it says in my post, I don't use Twitter or any of those other websites. You can quote what you want. Just link the article. Thank you.