Of course you love Facebook. You love the way it makes you feel to have so many friends. Yes, thousands of them. You love the fact that you can have open, personal interactions with all of those who mean something to you.
And then there's what you really think about them. Which, should you be human, can be something a little more critical, a little more personal.
A new site called AboutEveryone.com understands your feelings. It purports to offer you the opportunity to vent your real feelings about your Facebook friends, with a security that Facebook cannot possibly offer. Yes, you can do it anonymously.
The site's method is blissfully simple. It asks you to "select a user by visiting the user's Facebook profile and pasting the URL below."
Once you do that, you can release your thoughts about the way your Facebook friend smells and about how he's the most untrustworthy, conniving pifflehead since Genghis Khan's law tutor.
Here is a sample of the deep-seated improvisation that is offered on AboutEveryone: "f*** you. You think you have the perfect little life (and you do) but that's why I hate you.. and ppl like you. You think you can just walk all over us poor, not-as-smart-as-you ppl and get away with it so, thanks for not being there when I needed you cuz you decided you were better than me. f*** youuuu."
This was not written in reference to any tech company CEO. Still, you have to wonder about some of the awful--and awfully human--possibilities this site extends.
Here's another: "I am such an easy-going person. I have never LOATHED anyone before this chick. She was my bff and then I caught her in a lie, accidentally. When confronted she said she'd make my life a living hell. And that she did, she ICED me out of all my friendships. I hate her. I want to beat the shit out of her, but I won't. I've got responsibilities and I can't afford to be in jail."
You wouldn't see posts like that on Facebook so often, would you? Anyone who has anything against you--for whatever unjustified and perverse reason--can post something to this site. You just know this could have consequences.
Within days, some enthusiastically modernized human resources person will waft there, just before you are extended a job offer or a promotion. Suddenly, the words of one critic might drown out the adoring fawning of your Facebook friends.
But perhaps even worse than that is the idea that people will start posting positive things about themselves in order to balance out (or even pre-empt) any criticism. "John is the most wonderful, caring, thoughtful, wealthy, great-in-bed boyfriend I've ever had," a poster might offer (about himself). "I can't believe I ever let him go."
I fear this site will become the repository of much trouble. I fear the odor of retaliations and lawsuits. I fear it is another site that can only, in the end, offer pain and anguish to the innocent just as much as to the guilty.
Yes, I fear many people are going to love it.