Jan 20 2010

Facebook and groups

On Facebook we have profiles, groups and fan pages. Profiles are only for real persons while fan pages are for artists, companies or brands. Then we have the groups which are for everything else, more or less. There are tons of groups at Facebook and most of them are categorized as “just for fun” and are totally pointless.

Most of these pointless groups in swedish also start with “vi som…”, for example “vi som älskar Ben&Jerry’s glass” (we, who love Ben&Jerry’s ice cream). I am very restrictive to groups in general and I rarely join them because I want to keep my Facebook profile somewhat serious, even if it’s not super deadly serious. I have also always had my account set up so that the list of groups I am member of doesn’t show up on my profile page for anyone else than myself. But I can still understand people who use Facebook just for fun and join groups with funny names like “I Dont care How Comfortable Crocs Are, You Look Like A Dumbass” for example.

Although lately a new reason to not join silly groups you don’t know the founder of have been revealed.  Last weeks (at least in Sweden) there have been a lot of trolling among the groups at Facebook. Someone start a group with a name good enough to gather a lot of unsuspecting people, after a while they change the name of the group to something uncomfortable. This Facebook scamming really went over the limit this week when it started to exploit the victims of the disaster-stricken island of Haiti. First, a group called “Vi som ska göra 2010 till det bästa året någonsin” (we who will make year 2010 the best year ever), which had existed since before the earthquake, changed name to “200.000 jobs available on Haiti”. Then a group called “2 SEK per member to the disiaster-stricken people on Haiti” which had got over 200.000 members changed its picture and wrote the the sponsor was from the swedish necrophiliac association who wanted the dead bodies. I won’t go further on with how disgusting and tasteless this is, because there are already a lot of people who have blogged about it and there is not much more to say, we all agree on that it is sick and idiocy.

What I want to emphasize though, is that I think that you should think twice before you join a Facebook group. Maybe you need to ask yourself “why am I doing this?” before you click the “join button” that so easily is clicked without further consideration. Maybe you should check once or twice who the founder of the group is and think about if you trust him or her. There are also groups which suddenly appear without a group administrator, if for example the administrator has deactivated his/her account, then anyone can take over the group and change its name.

Yesterday I left the few groups I was a member of which wasn’t created by me or any of my friends. And my advice to you is, at least check through the list of groups you are a member of, ask yourself why you are a member and make a double check of the profiles behind groups. And be careful out there soldiers, after all, there are people who do not wish everyone well.