Con: Is Facebook Still Cool?

Julia Govan, Opinion Editor

I, like many of my peers, have had a Facebook account ever since MySpace became outdated and “uncool.” With Facebook’s release to the public in 2005, the social networking site generated a new medium to communicate with friends, post photos, and share thoughts on each others’ walls. And while all these amenities have good intentions, lately Facebook has become more annoying than useful, and the days of the site being cool are over.

In many respects, Facebook can often be very helpful and proactive. To note, organizing upcoming events or communicating with other students about a certain class has been made much easier by Facebook.

However, whether or not this was ever Facebook’s intention, its main purpose now is solely to stalk people. There’s no point in denying it. And although it is always entertaining to creep on that person in class you “kind of, sort of know” or the college life of a recent high school grad, the site can oftentimes become boring, if not irritating.

The sheer magnitude of statuses is just one example of Facebook’s declining appeal. In many cases, statuses that pop up on the news feed can be relevant and even funny. However, we all know that person who treats Facebook like a diary, updating their life every few hours.

But sometimes, it’s not just the amount of statuses, but the type. After years of personal Facebook usage, it seems the most bothersome ones to materialize on the news feed can be boiled down into three categories: inspirational, baiting and poorly typed.

In some instances, inspirational statuses can be uplifting to a reader. But there comes a time when posting an inspirational quote or line from a song just becomes  overdone.

Baiting statuses usually end elusively, sometimes asking a broad question or ending in three periods. The problem with these is that most of the time, the author of the status is directing it towards one person in particular, yet this person remains unnamed. Such ambiguity baits an unsuspecting news feed browser to comment in the hopes of gaining insight on whomever is being referenced. The result of this curiousity  leads to a stream of never ending comments.

The poorly typed are simply, poorly typed. Unfortunately, no matter how well intended the status is, if misspelled, one of your 600 friends is sure to comment with a correction within five minutes.

Every few months it seems that Facebook undergoes maintenance and returns with an entirely different and hard to use layout, the latest example of which is Timeline.

This recent Facebook update organizes all of your profile wall posts ever created, by you or someone else, chronologically in an easily accessible layout, starting from your birth. In other words, those embarrassing middle school mirror pictures you hoped would forever stay stashed in the confines of your wall from 2007 are only a quick click away.

Ironically enough, on Facebook there are hundreds of groups which are exclusively dedicated to the shared detest of Timeline.

Despite Facebook’s many drawbacks, it is not and will never be Twitter. After Twitter’s rise to popularity, Facebook users started to see hashtags begin to creep their way into the social networking world. And this would be perfectly fine, if they actually made any difference to the text they’re placed in front of. I understand their usage in the Twitter realm; however, anywhere outside of it is unnecessary and pointless.

There are other means of planning and conversing with others without having to put up with the distraction the social networking site inflicts or the oftentimes annoying posts, photos and videos that clog up the news feed.

Sadly, but appropriately, it may be time for Facebook to regress into the shadows and become a footnote from the first decade of the 21st century.