We, Filipinos are known for our friendly demeanor. We are warm, hospitable and very accommodating. But I think this character is tested when it comes to social media. A lot of people got in trouble because of their posts. There are also those who have been bullied online and were harshly treated by strangers. Is this a sign of Filipino hospitality? But I will not talk about cyber bullying or online harassment. What I want to look at is unfriending someone on Facebook.
Admittedly, I have added some people in my FB friends list whom I was never really friends with in the past. One time, I saw a friend request from a girl but I couldn’t remember who she was. I saw that our common friends were my high school batch mates, so I added her thinking she was a school mate. In one of get together with my high school friends, we talked about this girl. The conversation became hysterically funny as all of us realized we never really knew the girl yet all of us added her as a friend. Turns out she is from another school and was just a neighbor of one of our batch mates. All of us immediately deleted this person from our lists.
As I was reading my News Feed on Facebook the other day, I saw a recent post of a “friend.” It was not a disturbing photo nor was I seeing a long list of complaints over some petty thing. It was a picture of this person’s child feeding the brightly colored koi fish in a pond. It occurred to me that I never had a decent conversation with the person ever since we became FB friends. This person has been on my list for years but we never really built a decent “relationship”. I headed on to the person’s profile and clicked the Unfriend button.
This act got me thinking, what are the reasons Filipinos unfriend or block a person from Facebook. I asked some friends and posted a question on my Facebook account too. Here are the top five reasons why we do that:
5. We unfriend because they were not really our “friends” to begin with. Because we are so accommodating, we tend to accept friend requests left and right without really thinking. Duh?!
4. We unfriend because they flood the news feed with their photos, their game requests (this was when FB games were so active), their check-ins, their rants and endless whining. Every time we log in, it’s their face, their profile on the top page.
3. We unfriend because their political, social, religious views and values are different from ours. Sometimes when they talk it’s as if they know everything, which bothers a lot of the people I asked. We are free to speak our mind about anything under the sun but to attack, demean or discredit a person or an institution without proof is outright slander. It can also be a way for us to unintentionally judge their them, judge their life which leads us to sin.
4. We unfriend because they keep uploading inappropriate videos or photos especially of women. This is a show of total disrespect to women and offensive to children as well. This is dangerous especially for parents who have young kids because they may accidentally view them.
5. Lastly, we unfriend because they hurt us. Some have experienced being talked behind their backs or hurting the people close to them. An ex-officemate, ex-boss, former classmate or schoolmate, neighbor or ex-boyfriend/ex-girlfriend can fit this category.
I hope this is not too heavy or offensive to you but it’s a reality in social media these days. I may have been guilty of some of the above reasons and I may have lost some friends too. But then again, God has called us to live in peace 1 Corinthians 7:15
But what do I do? If I can’t stand their posts, hide them. Unfortunately, this does not work always. What’s the next step? Ignore them. Don’t let them bother you but that’s easier said than done.
Have you ever deleted or blocked someone in your friends’ list on Facebook? What made you do that?