National Unfriend Day

November 17, 2010 Is going to be the first edition of the National Unfriend Day. So what does this mean? Does everybody need to go around saying goodbye to their friends and just hope to make a few new friends in the near future?

That would of course be an option, but the real meaning of the National Unfriend Day, or maybe even better said, International Unfriend Day, is to delete all those people you call friends on social networking sites like Facebook, people you have actually never seen in your life.

Jimmy Kimmel called for this action to unfriend and clean up your account, leaving just the real friends in your network. I think this is actually a really good action, seeing that many people just keep adding and adding contacts and never really care about any of them. There are many reasons to do this, mostly because of networking (read business) attempts and the social networking sites are becoming more and more filled with spammers.

Another reason for unfriending those people you have never heard of, is because it is bringing down the importance of real friends. Real friends are those who will be there in times you need them. The ones you can laugh with and cry with, real people you know.

So how many friends do you have on all your social networking sites? Are you one of those people who seem to be collecting friends on the go, adding anybody and everybody in the hope to grow a huge group of friends? Or are you as picky online as you are in the real life?

Do you think there is a difference between online friends and the ones you have in real life? Are you friends with people you have never seen before?

When I first read about the National Unfriend Day I kind of chuckled, but then I started thinking about what friendship really means and whether it is possible to be friends with people you have never met in your life. I have one contact in particular whom I have been talking to online for about 2 years. We have never met in person seeing that she lives in Canada and I live in Spain, thousands of miles apart.

Another big difference is our age. I am mid-thirties while she is a bit older, a grandmother already and a wealth of knowledge. We have been talking for years and keep writing emails ever week just to share our lives with each other. I help her with her websites or if she runs into any Internet emergency and she listens to me ramble on about whatever rocks my boat.

We laugh a lot and to be frank, I do believe she is a real friend for me, even without having seen her in my life. Unfriending her would be a huge mistake but I am sure that tomorrow November 17 I will go through all those contacts on the social networking sites I am a member of and have a closer look at all those people called "friends".

Are you going to join me? Are you going to take a closer look at the importance of real friendship or are you just going to continue befriending anybody you come across online?