Wednesday, August 20, 2008

Facebook Updates: The New TMI

The line between updating your Facebook status and vomitting your personal life on your 400 + friends has gotten blurrier than a Hoboken St.Patty's day.

So what's the deal with everyone being status update-obsessed lately? Is it simply our love of refering to ourselves in the third person or is digital documentation giving us a greater sense of importance? After all if a tree falls and no one sees it, did it really fall? It seems the updates that are popping up most often can fall into four benign buckets:

1) Random thoughts: "Alley...thinks Sue is a great name for a lawyer."
2) Updates that actually provide information: "Josh is...excited to be an uncle."
3) Culturally relevant anecdotes: "Colby...can't help but notice the women and horses on Mad Men both respond to rough handling."
4) Cryptic commentary: "Greg the dream." Sidenote: I've been seeing these a lot lately and they make me laugh most. I mean if you're trying to be mysterious, here's a hint: don't update your Facebook status.

But it is the fifth category that is most worrisome: TMI updates. From friends saying they are "...excited to spoon their favorite person later" to "Kristina f&#$ing pissed off" these digital overshares are a small but growing faction of status updates on Facebook and can really throw a wrench in our romanTECH affairs. Recently, one of my friends went out with a girl and got home to see that she was "...excited about new possibilities." He argued, that this instant-message-in-a-bottle was sent to a sea of friends when it should have just been directed to him. I argue that a text message stating that would have been worst. IN any event he never followed up with her, and asked me cockily, "think she got the message?"

After thinking long and hard about why this chica chose an external monologue I started to think that maybe in a way its a safer (though passive aggressive) way to show your feelings to a romanTECH interest. Afterall there is no guarantee your love interest will see your post and in the case that they do and feel the same way, its a win win. In the case they do and don't feel the same way you could always play it off and say you were talking about DVR, I mean are they that "e"-go-centric that they think your status is about them?


  1. My complaint with digital TMI: People have become so introverted in person and so expressive online. It's just plain corny. Be one whole person, dammit! Otherwise, it's just another way of being two-faced in my (admittedly extreme) opinion. But instead, people are offended by anything that happens in person and Captain Passive Aggressive online.

    Example: About a month ago at work, I mentioned in conversation that my girlfriend and I sleep in the same bed and one alarmed co-worker shouted, "TM freaking I, dude!" Now c'mon. Of all the things my girlfriend and I do in the same bed, I think "sleep" is the furthest from TMI.

  2. I think the entire concept of spilling your mental notes onto the internet lacks mystery. I don't really want to know what everyone is doing from minute to minute....Booorrring!!

    It's just another example of how self-obssessed people really are...I think everyone is starting to believe that they are mini celebs...

  3. Your post about status updates being TMI cracks me up... You have a blog where you detail some really intimate situations. I love it, though. Keep up the good work.