Thursday, October 27, 2011
The Anatomy of a Good Facebook Stalking
We’ve all been there. Sitting at our computers minding our own business when the infamous FB notification pops up “Sam (aka Gross Guy at work you felt compelled to friend accept) likes your photo.” And then you click on the link and there it is. You at a family picnic seven years ago with your belly button piercing gleaming in the sunlight. And then another “Like” then another and suddenly you’re news feed is full of YOU and HIM and the creepy association his liking has created.
WTF? Did that just happen? That’s photo number 756 out of 2,098 and now he’s tagged his dirty “like” thumb all over your page. And the goose bumps rise up on your arms and you feel compelled to close the blinds and recheck the doors. *GASP* Do you unfriend?
Or you’re driving and you get the sudden ninja text from the weirdo down the street that reads, “What time are you going to be at Old Chicago tonight?” .07 seconds after you post your evening Happy Hour plans there. Uhhhhhhh… really?
That being said, I totally FB stalk people and I don’t care what you say, so do you. You know that you’ve sat on the couch (or toilet with your iPhone), searching for exes, stalking new friends you’ve just added and scanning their “Info” page to get the down low on their favorite bands, sayings, and activities so the next time you see them you can nonchalantly say, “Crazy running into here at this Vegan Paleo restaurant, I eat here all the time before heading out to my acroyoga class while listening to Matchbox 20. Oh, you do that too? I thought I was the only one…”
I’ve also been guilty of conducting strategic FB stalking ops. You know the ones I’m talking about. Where you deliberately “like” a cute photo that’s a few in the stash to clearly say with your little thumbs up, “I like this in the same way I’d like to be in your pants.” There is a fine line to an effective FB stalking and here is how I break it down.
The best way to FB stalk is to do so openly and while telling your targets that it’s happening. For example, today I posted the following post (warning) on my wall:
By publicly acknowledging my intentions, I feel empowered to stalk both per my announcement and per my whims. Anyone who is stalked by me in subsequent days won’t know if it’s real stalking or just part of my routine effectively making something already creepy even more so.
Genius? Maybe. Creepy? Totally. Just gave myself goose bumps.