I’ve had facebook for more than 5 years now and started at the end of my college career. I want to point out that this is my benchmark for the amount of friends I have and if you joined facebook while you were in high school, your numbers are going to be HUGELY inflated. If At this point, facebook is so established that new friends aren’t happening as often as they were when it was in its infancy. In a way this is sad because I pretty much have maxed out my friend list. Maybe I’ll meet some new people on weekends but then we are only talking about adding a person or two at a time. The amount of friends you have is a good indicator of your personality. Let’s FACE it, the more people you know and the more extroverted your personality, the more friends you’ll have. The less friends you have the more you either say fuck facebook or you just don’t get along with people. Let’s break it down.
<100 friends – You don’t feel the need for any inclusion in society. Basically you are secure with yourself, probably an introvert, and don’t care what people think about you. Or you just are a late comer to facebook and fell through the cracks of the normal process of accumulating friends. Most likely though the people on your list are really people you know and probably stay in contact with. I would however say that people with less then 100 friends are not fitting in to society in “normal” terms but that’s not saying “normal” is right. Just by existing in society for the last 5+ years you would have come in contact with more than 100 potential people through going to parties or events to lead you to have more than 100 friends. Obviously if joined facebook in your 30’s+, this is harder to do. If you have less then 100 you must be giving off a vibe that says, you don’t want to be my friend.
100-500 friends – I think if you joined facebook while you were experiencing college, you’ll have somewhere in this category of friends. It’s hard to not meet a ton of people in college and the usual procedure is to make them your facebook friend. I’ve been out of college for 5 years now and the adding of friends is no where near where it was back then. I think this amount means you probably have added a decent amount of people you know and also a fair share of people who you come into contact every so often. Basically you probably only come into close contact with 100 or so but you have met extra people through your travels. I think your list of friends is predominantly 1/3 people you know, 1/3 people you knew, and 1/3 people you probably don’t want to know.
500-1000 – At this number you are actively seeking facebook friends. That guy on the couch at the party just became your friend. The girl in your Econ class that sits 4 rows back is your friend. Most people you come into contact with, you want them as your facebook friend. It is a measure of how popular you are and having as many facebook friends as possible proves that. I honestly think it’s hard to have more than 30-50 close friends and at this level you have to hardly know some of the people on your friend list. I would never defriend anyone (every now and then) but you could probably X people off and never think twice about the decision because they mean nothing to you. I will add though that some people are genuinely likable and accumulate a mass amount of friends who they are actually friendly with. Just because I hate everyone, and this is how I perceive people with huge friends lists, doesn’t make it wrong. Jealous maybe?
1000+ – You are either a really hot girl who everyone wants to be your friend or you are a social butterfly who has this NEED for acceptance and friend information. Let’s face it, if you are a hot girl, guys are going to friend you even if they just say hello to you at a party. Everyone wants a shot at getting laid by a hot chick and hot girls should just be nice by accepting any friend request seems perfectly reasonable. The other side is the gossip people who just love knowing everyone so they just friend any breathing being just to get the scoop. Having a news feed of constantly updated with information thrills people and is actually desired by some. At this point, 1000 people is just so far from my realm of understanding that I can’t even comment on that amount. This must just be more of a milestone then something of any meaning.
I just checked and I have 353 friends. Obviously as I’m writing this I made sure that I put myself in the category I assume is exactly where you want to be. I feel like I have a good network of close friends, some random friends from college who I won’t ever see again, and some girls who I creepily facebook stalk. I could easily delete 100 without noticing they are gone. I don’t use facebook chat and other then posting this blog URL, I really don’t have much use for facebook. Yes I find it a good time waster and if I had more friends, I’d just waste more time reading random profiles and browsing pictures of people I’ll never see.
The real reason of this post though is that facebook is maturing and my addition of friends is stopping. The realization of this and how facebook has 600 million users should be staggering to all. I have about 20 people in my phone who I contact on a week to week but I have 350 friends. I’m in no way social but I think that just having access to 350 people’s lives means something. It keeps you in touch with reality by seeing how other people are living their lives. Oh John Doe just got married, Jane just had a baby, Nance is throwing a party… Facebook really is a great social tool and it’s not surprising that it has become as big as it has become. It offers connection and communication globally and that is truly awesome. I would love to have a greater network on facebook but it won’t really change my life any at this point. However, if you aren’t my friend and you read my blog, make me your friend because anyone who reads my blog is a friend of mine. I also want to say that if you have any additions or edits to my categories, I think my readers should have a say in updating these categories.