The Independent Voice of Southern Methodist University Since 1915

The Daily Campus

The Daily Campus

The Independent Voice of Southern Methodist University Since 1915

The Daily Campus

The Independent Voice of Southern Methodist University Since 1915

The Daily Campus


What does “friend” mean in the Facebook era?

We once lived in a glorious world where friend meant friend. Alas, that world as passed on before us.

Now, thanks to Facebook, friend can mean acquaintance or someone you’ve seen once before.

Friend used to mean a person for which you actually cared. A person whose phone number you had memorized and whose parents you knew by name. A person that you would consider taking a bullet for (or jumping in front of a train for – or other Bruno Mars such things). You used to know your friends’ birthdays and their favorite colors.

But now, since the advent of our technologically advanced world, friends are the people that you have only seen that one time at the dining hall. You may actually have to stalk your own Facebook page to remember the name of that one friend. You don’t remember your friends birthdays because it will always be on Facebook.

Now, a friendship isn’t official until it is on Facebook.

But what about those friends that aren’t on Facebook or what about those “friends” on Facebook that you have never actually met.

Because of Facebook, the word friend has taken on a completely new meaning. The entire idea has been degraded.

The term friend no longer has the same meaningful connotation as times long ago. In this new reality, it can even be used as a verb. As in “friend.” the action wherein one acquires personal information about a casual acquaintance on an insecure website. And when has the process of losing a friend been so definite as when you have been defriended?

Now friends require an adjective distinction: Facebook friend or real friend.

But what is the advantage of having so much information about Facebook friends? Why of course, the simple answer is the infamous activity of Facebook stalking. For friending people on Facebook is the beginning of the slippery slope to becoming a stalker.

What other activity does a college student spend so much time doing?

As we continue to collect Facebook friends like cyber-Pokemon, it is crucial that we remember our real friends and continue to make meaningful relationships outside of cyberspace. It is important that we remember the birthdays of those closest to us, as well as favorite color and weekend goings on. We need these real-in-the-flesh relationships to survive our increasingly technological world.

And, of course, we need real friends to assist our stalking of our mutual Facebook friends.

Jordan Johansen is senior history, music and anthropology triple major. She can be reached for comments or questions at [email protected].

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