Congratulations Green Bay Packers on your 2014 Super Bowl win! Or was it the Los Angeles Lakers? The Boston Red Sox?
I don’t know because I don’t care.
If the Super Bowl was good for anything this year, it obviously wasn’t for my thighs. It was, however, enlightening in that it made me realize how much I hate most of my friends on Facebook.
Facebook used to be an online refuge for promiscuous young adults to post flattering, photoshopped photos of their best angles, add friends to provide direct evidence of their popularity and sneakily investigate the relationship statuses of potential love interests. Sadly, these are Facebook trends of the past. In 2006, I created my Facebook account as an impressionable incoming college freshman to be used as a platform to project my “coolness” onto the world I was about to enter. Now, I fear, I’m a stranger here myself, lost and confused in an unfamiliar virtual territory that would be more appropriately named if it were called ESPN.com.
As I was scrolling through my newsfeed yesterday, I was bombarded with obnoxious football posts — One after another after another after another. I don’t even know the difference between offense and defense and you want me to care about game stats and key players? Forget about it.
And if I had to read the brutally uninspired updates that said, “Go Hawks!” or “What’s going on Broncos?!” one more time, I was going to freak out. Doesn’t anyone have anything original to say anymore? The homogeneous status updates about the game yesterday only further reiterated to me that most of my friends don’t have any personality, and unfortunately, they’re getting the bris.
But sports fans aren’t the only ones driving me nuts in cyberspace.
It used to be that babies on Facebook were my biggest frustration with the virtual world. They’re one of the worst things to happen to social media since our parents. It’s next to impossible to avoid illegible photos of ultrasounds, uninspired status updates about the hardships of parenting and tedious progress pictures tracking growing baby bumps.
I challenge you to see if you can avoid mention of babies on Facebook. It’s almost impossible these days as they are making their social media debuts in record time. A recent survey of 2,367 parents of children aged five and under found that photos of more than two-thirds of newborns appeared online within an average time period of just 59.7, minutes and 62 percent of the pictures are posted by the parent’s themselves.
Today, in the world of social media the irritating, hot new trend is to replace your sexy “selfie” profile picture with a photo of your newborn. Designating your profile picture to a gummy infant that looks like every other baby that was ever born, suggests that your entire existence is defined and validated by an undeveloped being that feeds from a nipple and speaks fluently in screams and cries. Frankly, I liked you better when your photos pictured you chugging from beer bongs and dancing on tabletops. At least then we still shared some common interests.
But expectant mothers and new parents aren’t the only ones that are virtually irritating. To all my friends that are posting pictures of your happy hour cocktails: stop it. Sure, maybe you’re more fun than my friends with newborns, but I don’t need to see your ridiculous drinking pictures to prove it. You’re drinking a Neon Green Appletini with a maraschino cherry? Not only does your choice in beverage disgust me, but you just revealed to the world what an amateur drinker you are. Grow up and order an Anchor Steam like an adult.
And dear friends that are posting about religion, I hate you. Love, Kate. If you know anything about me, you know that I am a far cry from a saint and when I have to read a status update that says, “I really love learning about Jesus. Like, I’ve been a Christian for a really long time, and then I have these moments where I am struck by how totally relevant Jesus is to a new aspect of my life, and it’s almost like I just came to faith all over again. Anybody feel me?”
No, I don’t feel you. I didn’t attend church last Sunday, or on any Sunday for that matter. I believe strongly in premarital sex and my concept of reality is based strictly on science. Sorry, but you’re clogging my news feed and it’s got to stop. Defriend.
So go ahead and post a picture of your favorite baby, or a useless statistic about the San Francisco 49ers. I’m beyond uninterested, and if you’re looking to lose a digital friend this week, go ahead and continue to clog my News Feed accordingly.
Kate Hofberg is a graduate student in the College of Communication. She can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org