by Dennis Yang
Thu, Dec 13th 2007 2:23pm
From giving a girlfriend your letter jacket to public displays of affection, some relationship rituals are meant for more than just the two people involved -- they exist to let everyone know that you are both, indeed, taken. It's no surprise that these acts have found online equivalents. For relationships in the online generation, Facebook has become the de facto place to announce one's relationship status to the world. Sure, MySpace and Friendster had relationship statuses, but any changes to your relationship status remained in relative obscurity unless someone was actively monitoring it every day. Short-lived SingleStat.us was created to help to solve just that problem for pining MySpace Romeos. On Facebook, however, change your status to "In A Relationship" and a little heart appears in your personal news feed, which then immediately spreads the good news to all of your Facebook friends. Having trouble finding time to have that "Relationship Defining Talk?" Just change your status with the object of your affection, and if they consent, then, Voila! No messy "talking" needed. But beware, breakups also happen in this brave new world. Whereas before the Internet, a public breakup may have involved a heated yelling match at a local diner, today, breaking up over Facebook draw the collective ire of thousands.
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