The Impact Of Having Friends Never Fade Away
from the they're-stuck-with-you dept
Of course, it appears that much of this is actually mitigated by social norms and the rapid turnover of social networks. So, for example, while I've recently had many high school friends "refriend" me on Facebook, and I may chat briefly with those I really was friendly with, I pretty much ignore those that I barely knew. Sure they're on my "friend" list, but beyond that, it's rather inconsequential. But, more importantly, with social networks rising and falling rapidly, we seem to have a natural culling mechanism. So, all those friends I was connected to via SixDegrees and Friendster are meaningless now because I never use those services any more, and at some point the same will likely be true for Facebook.
Still, in the link above, Scott Brown does offer one amusing suggestion: a Facebook app that he calls the "Fade Utility." If there are "untended friends," they gradually fade from your friend list. Just like in real life.