“I can’t believe you accepted her friend request! She is your ex-girlfriend. You can’t just accept her friend request. She wrote on your wall, she probably even messaged you, I can’t believe the nerve.”’
“Honey, its really not that big of a deal – it is just Facebook.”
Quarrels started by Facebook are becoming more commonplace in today’s society. Facebook has become so common it has even made its way into couple’s divorce petitions.
A recent report stated that 20 percent of petitions for divorce at a U.K. law firm use Facebook as evidence. This statistic seems logical when you understand Facebook is a free space in which individuals are able to share information, often not know who is looking. High school and college students are already tired of lectures of what they should and should not be putting on Facebook. Now it seems that it might be adults who need to receive that same lecture.
Facebook has even begun to define how high school and college students define their relationships. If it is not on Facebook, it is not official. Gone are the days of letter man jackets and senior rings; instead, a simple line of text accessible on our computers and mobile phones.
This new staple for determining one’s relationship status has become a quintessential part of a relationship. When to put the relationship on Facebook and what type of relationship, are now decisions a couple must make. At the same time, Facebook has made it more difficult to determine if someone is single or not.
Girls state that they are in a relationship with another girl, guys and girls are engaged or married when they are not even dating, and what is an ‘open relationship?’ Users have taken the simple declaration of availibility and made it difficult to understand relationships on Facebook. While this is often easy to recognize and a simple funny inside joke, this poses a more dificult problem as we grow older. As people begin to come out or get legitimately engaged or married, how can one tell when they are serious, especially when we are not as close with our Facebook friends as real friends?
Facebook can also lead to couples breaking up, just as the UK is proving. Whether it is marriage, engagements, or high school flings; Facebook poses the ability to break up a couple within any one thing posted, be it intentional or not.
It seems that all of these little nuances that Facebook poses have become a routine part of high school and college student usage on Facebook. However, as Facebook has opened its doors, inexperienced users are misinterpreting and misusing many of the Facebook functions we have already mastered. These nuances are something that new users will have to adjust to quickly or face more incidents such as what the U.K. is facing.