In one of the world’s most widely anticipated—and reported—IPOs in history, Facebook is poised to raise at least $5 billion and begin selling its stock this spring. Perhaps more impressive than the expected $5 billion windfall are the 800 million active users who are still wild about a “fad” that I once called “the pet rock of the digital age.”
Okay, I admit it. I was way off about Facebook…and I have been almost off Facebook more times than the seven stranded castaways on the Isle of Gilligan. Why? To quote the Gospel According to John Hughes, “in the simplest terms and the most convenient definitions”…Facebook still feels like high school to me. In high school, we all fit neatly into one of five social categories, right? So I must steal a page from the Hughes script and apply this same “five social categories” principle to all 800 million of you Facebookers out there. I like to call it “The Five MEs of Facebook.” So which Facebook ME are YOU?
Are you a “Hey, remember ME”?
These aren’t actual Facebookers…they’re YearBookers. They’re the first to scan and post pics from old yearbooks and photo albums from the good ol’ days. If it were up to them, we’d celebrate reunions like birthdays and we wouldn’t need Netflix…because we’d just stream old home movies from each other during homeroom. And we’d buy the lie that we look as good in bathing suits today as we did in all those spring break pics we “just happened to find” while visiting mom’s attic. Shame on ME!
Are you a “Hey, look at ME”?
These are the FaceHookers. The ones voted most likely to turn their cell phone cameras around and pimp themselves out…daily. If they have children, they’ll occasionally exploit them too…but their children are more like trophies that help shine the spotlight onto “look at ME”. Or better yet, garnishes that attempt to enhance the presentation of cheap meat. And for many a FaceHooker, real tricks are being turned. Ever notice how it’s always summer in their world, their clothing stores ran out of sleeves, and their cell phone cameras are Velcroed to their bathroom mirrors?
Are you a “Hey, Facebook’s not really for ME”?
These are the FakeBookers and FaceLookers. They sign up for Facebook, go on a 24-hour friending spree, only to Faceplant themselves in the Facebook protection program behind the same years-old profile pic/smug shot. They know who they are, and we’re not fooled by their ambivalence toward social networking. They secretly monitor our every post, pic, and nip slip. They’re not quite voyeurs, stalkers, or gawkers…they’re more like the hall monitors of middle school, the narcs of high school, and the nosy old neighbor who peeks through her blinds every G-damn time my kids so much as breathe within 300 feet of her house. Sorry, where was I?
Are you a “Hey, help ME”?
These are the FaceHaters and FaceBaiters who routinely bitch and cry for help from the BFFs they should text in private in the event of a real emergency. For every blunt “I’m not happy with my life” or whiny “I can’t fall asleep” there’s a vague, almost redemption-fueled cry like “You know who you are” or “I know what you did last summer!” And we’re all stupid enough to take the bait because “the boy who cried wolf” is the only parable that made any sense to us growing up. Note to the “Help MES” of Facebook: In the event of an actual emergency, you can just dial 1-800-GET-OFF-THE-F**KING-COMPUTER!
Are you a “Hey, nothing…just hey from ME”?
These are the FaceInvaders who abduct our news feeds with hackneyed links and mindless musings about the contents of their refrigerators, closets, and shitters. They’re narcissistic enough to believe their midnight jaunts to 7-Eleven for Big Gulps are as newsworthy as dancing the jig with the bulls in Pamplona. Every crap they take is 60 Minutes-worthy. Maybe they share the mundane so we can feel their pain? Or maybe they fancy themselves as the Dos Equis man of Facebook…when, in fact, they are the least interesting men and women in the world.
OR…and God bless you if you are…
Are you one of the rare, relevant, and refreshing Facebookers who we all aspire to be? Sure you may be guilty of the occasional nostalgic, vane, or mundane post…but you never lose sight of what’s witty and post-worthy. Simply put, you make the Facebook world go ‘round and this world would be flat, square, shameless, and (perhaps) IPO-less without you.
Now does being one of Facebook’s finest give you a golden ticket to the IPO? Heck no! Like me, you may have to settle for a far less lucrative stock…or the next pet rock.