The Average Number of Friends on Facebook for Young People is 243
A month after joining Facebook in February 2008, I could only managed to add 76 friends to my account; nowadays I have 142 and I do consider it is too much; I mean, the majority of them are not really my friends; I can honestly say that they are on my “friend list” because I wanted to increase the number of “mates, buddies, etc.,” but only online, I didn’t want to have more “real friends”; at the time I was competing with my actual friends and thought that anything under 100 will make me look unpopular and sad. Once I reached my target, I forgot about it but still received the occasional invite from people I went to school with years and years ago, I never liked them but still added them.
Facebook Friends; Really?
A few weeks ago I received an “event invite” from a very good friend of mine and I noticed that at the time 21 people were attending, 5 clicked on “maybe attending”, 26 were not going to attend at all and 6 people had not replied yet. I was extremely surprised, I had known him for over seven years now and I have only met around 10 of his friends, and that includes his brother and fiancée. I decided to do some research so I went through his profile and Facebook friend list; to my surprise, he had 958 friends; I thought to myself: really? 958? How did that happen? Where are they? How come I have never met them?
Since I was very curious to find out about “his friends” I decided to ask him about them; the answer was “I added people who I went to college with, school, university, my workmates, neighbours and so on”. I just couldn’t believe it; did he really need to add so many people? People he hasn’t talked for the last 10 years and might never talk to again? I went though a few other profiles and I noticed that many of them have over 250 and some of them over 500 friends. I just don’t think this is right; what if you make a comment about one of them without realising he or she might be reading it? How do you know that something that should never be posted online, like a funny or even worse, an indecent photograph is actually published? Also, can you image the amount of Spammy Facebook Apps they might be receiving?
In order to avoid all the possible consequences that having too many “friends” could create, I think there are a few rules we should follow when we deciding if a friend should be added to our list. You shouldn’t add him or her if you:
1) Haven’t talked to that person for over 5 years (unless it was the love of you life and have been reunited thanks to Facebook.
2) Have ended a relationship (even if it is in good terms)
3) Went to school with them (you will never see them again; but feel free if you have a great life and want to brag about it)
4) They are the friends of your friends (why do you have to accept them?).
5) You don’t know them (I used to received dozens a month, until I changed my private settings).
6) People you met on holiday (it doesn’t need explanation)
7) One-night stand? That is a no no no.
8) Delete the ones that are NOT really your friends (they won’t even notice)