You want to quit smoking? Amazing. Go ahead. More working out, less bags of Funyons? Good for you. Tremendous.
But here's the one hitch with those and most other New Year's Resolutions: They're only helping one person. Where's your spirit of community, non-smoking, slimmed-down Comrade??
Now, you wanna do something that benefits you and every relative, friend, sorta-friend and guy-you-hung-with-that-one-time-at-that-wedding-who-had-some-interesting-thoughts-on-Jonah-Hill? Then resolve to ditch a handful of common Facebook annoyances. The above-mentioned company you keep on the site will be grateful.
Also, as far as resolutions go, what you'll find below are pretty easy ones to keep. Set the bar low and increase the odds of being able to brag about keeping your resolution for once. Says the guy whose 2012 pledge was to cut the amount of sugar in his coffee. (nailed it)
Do not Rage Post. Instead, breathe. A friend recently advised she'd be well served to never, ever again immediately comment on a post that got her all good n' fired up. The only thing quicker than our furious keystrokes in moments like this is often the surge of regret that arrives the moment after hitting "Send."
Her thoughts on instituting a mandatory "cooling off" period before replying sounds especially good coming off a presidential election (which left charred remains of friendships on our News Feed), plus the holidays with family, New Year's with an immodest blood-alcohol level and other occasions well-suited for breeding regrettable Facebook comments.
George Takei wins all of the memes.
If you're going to like, share and repost someone else's stuff, at least be sure it's good. This is good
. Possibly the best. And definitely better than whatever nonsense William Shatner
and Levar Burton are messing with.
Related: Enjoy someecards.
But don't share them. Because everyone else already is
Your co-workers are among Facebook's 1 billion users. The unemployment rate is already high enough. Please, do not go making such overt efforts to join the ranks by complaining about your job, co-workers, clients, desk location or break room odor on Facebook. FACEBOOK! of all places.
Do any of us still think this is some small, little club where only your ex-girlfriends or mommy friends hang out? Check that bolded font again: 1 billion users. This is not the forum for bitching about the very people and institutions which guarantee your livelihood. Someone of consequence will eventually read your self-immolating airing of grievances
And don't count on your privacy settings to save you. They are not airtight -- just ask Randi Zuckerberg about that
. There are places, quiet and empty places, on the Internet where you can go and vent about these things without fear of it being read. That's what Google Plus is for.
Facebook has a mute button. Embrace it. "No they don't," you protest. "I've never seen a mute button and I'm on Facebook like all day." OK, fair enough. But first off, do not go repeating the back half of that sentence to your employer. Second, you're right. Facebook's "mute button" is the Hide feature you can access from any post in your News Feed.
We all have habitual Facebook offenders who, for whatever reason, we no longer want to be bothered by -- but don't necessarily want to unfriend. Make Facebook a more enjoyable place for you to Facebook by hiding these folks. You may already know about and use this feature, in which case, so useful, amirite??
If not, find a post from someone you'd like to mute in your News Feed. Hover over the top-right part of their post and click the down arrow. Select "Hide" and whatever option suits your purposes. And no, despite whatever forward your mom emails you or copy & pasted status update is shared by your sister's babysitter, the person won't know they're hidden.
Cheaper than a real gift.
So speaking of someEcards, recently saw this one
regarding Facebook's birthday reminders. And this one
, which is pretty spot-on. But as easily mocked as the always looming birthday reminder feature is, seriously, go post a "Happy Birthday" on that person's wall, lazy. It takes two seconds, costs nothing, makes it look like you give just
enough of a damn and is just a decent thing to do.
Yes, there are nicer, more personal things you can do for someone on their birthday. But this? This is the very least you can do. Literally. The very... very least.
Let's make a deal:
Next time you claim a deal, don't tell your friends. Deal? And if posting about the deal is required to claim the deal, then no deal. Back away. Is a free, 2 oz bottle of body lotion
or a 2-for-1 offer on charm bracelets worth further irritating your patient friends and family? Spamming them with the minutiae of your online shopping habits?
Besides, you're just being used as an advertising vessel anyways. You want to go around with a big Nike logo across your chest? Fine. But you wouldn't like it if I came over to your computer and slapped a 'Zappos.com!' sticker on the monitor, so try not to subject your pals to the social media equivalent.
Those are just some of our thoughts on resolving to make Facebook a better place to Facebook -- but what about yours? Let us know what we left out in the comments!