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February 21, 2010

Updating Your Status is Why Facebook is Valuable


Buildings & clouds reflecting
in a East London street

Originally uploaded by cherbert.

A friend recently complained that when logging into Facebook, ~70% of his home page was filled with my "stupid updates - this isnt twitter man!"

As someone said recently, why be on Facebook if you're going to update your status? Or see the NYT's piece on ambient awareness.

Because despite the trivial, banal, and seemingly trivial drivel that can *sometimes* appear as people's status updates, your friends actually do read this. They may never admit it-- similar to people when asked which magazines the read would never admit to reading the tabloids at the check-out points of the grocery store-- but they do read and secretly enjoy seeing what their friends are doing. We are voyeristic animals, it's as simple as that.

Here's my what I posted back to my friend about my seemingly too many status updates (which I bet are on average, or only slightly above average, for status update frequency across the Facebook user base):

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Think of it this way, I don't post crap, I actually post cool, interesting things here that I think people might not have seen but that they would enjoy. In that sense, I'm a "cool" filter or curator who goes through of all the crap ad shares only the best of the best. You need to stop and smell the roses every once in a while and that's what I'm doing when I post a photo, story, link or video, I'm making you pause from the normal 9-5 rat race so that you can remember the more important things in life.

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