Where Do You Live?

Today I started my class with a prompt.

Would you rather have someone comment on your facebook status or give you a compliment in real life?

Before I get to the responses, let me take you back to how I came to this question.

I find myself ensconced in social networks. That’s right, I have completely draped myself in social networks. As the anti-hero George Constanza once uttered, “I would drape myself in velvet if it was socially acceptable”. And although it may not be socially acceptable to drape oneself in velvet (although it’d be a lot cooler if you did), surrounding yourself with tiny networks is perfectly fine.

The latest social networking forum to hit the web is Google Buzz. Yes, we are all now buzzing, however, we are also tweeting, blogging, skyping, ning-ing, and facebook-ing. Verbs are flying all around the Internet, but in reality, who can possibly keep up. Furthermore, who has time for reality when you have such a presence elsewhere?

In my end of decade post eloquently titled, My Decade, I predicted that one day, in the not so distant future, there would be one device that houses one, cohesive social network. It will simply be called Awesome. The Awesome…sorry, the developers at Google just locked down the patent for this name. I will now refer to my idea as “The Artist formerly known as Awesome” or TAFKA.

TAFKA will connect everything and everyone in one central forum. It will have a sleek interface and users will only need one username and password. This username will actually be affixed to all birth certificates after the year 2015. The filtering system on TAFKA will allow users to see all of their threaded conversations and happenings in real time. You will even have the ability to block content or users that constantly remind us in status updates that, “Today is a gift, that’s why it is a present”. I am not going to apologize if this happens to be your current status or a bumper sticker currently affixed (yes, the second time in one paragraph) to your Dodge Stratus, however, I will block you from my TAFKA feed.

Unfortunately, TAFKA is only a dream.

Last week, while I sat packed beneath mounds of snow, I began buzzing. I felt really guilty as I started to set up my new social networking tool. I felt like I was cheating on facebook. In fact, when I logged into facebook later that day, I received an error message followed by a hand reaching out from my screen and slapping me in the face (all are true, save for the Internet coming to life and slapping my face). Surely this was a sign of facebook’s disdain for my actions. But not to worry facebook, the buzz is slowly wearing off.

Throughout our daily lives, we are all connected in one form or another. Many of us subscribe to multiple forums that demand consistent attention. Some of us have encountered the awkward moment when you see a friend in real life, but have not yet replied to him or her in your virtual life. So how do we manage it all? And how do we find time to focus on real life when our social networking life is so demanding? Or, how do we find time to keep our network strong and vibrant and at the same time, manage the daily schedule of real life?

And this is how I arrived at my prompt.

I wanted to ask my students what they prefer when it comes to a simple compliment. Is it facebook compliment or verbal compliment?

Here are their results. Please leave a comment so they can see the world come filtering into their classroom.

In modern day life, I would rather have people in real life give me a compliment because it makes me feel like a better person having someone give me a compliment. On facebook there isn’t really any difference because of the fact that people are doing the same which is giving you compliments that can be posted on your facebook for a long period of time. But that person on facebook will just comment on your picture. What they see on your facebook can be different from what they see in person, which is why I would rather have people comment to me in person


I would rather have someone give me a comment in real life than on facebook.

Reason being, is some people make some smart comments on facebook that can really upset someone. Sometimes these comments can start big fight or disagreement between two people. In real life you can talk to that person about the disagreement rather than try to make fun of someone on facebook. That’s why I would rather have someone make a verbal comment to me than on facebook.


I would rather have someone give a compliment in real life than from facebook

because it means much more than if it comes over the Internet. I think if it’s a compliment over the Internet then the person that said it could just be saying it just to say it. For example, you may like a girl because of her looks on the Internet and when you meet her in real life then she isn’t what you expected her to be. I think a compliment in real life means more because you can tell if the person really means it or not and how they act without finding out later.


I would choose getting a compliment on Facebook. I would choose to get a comment on my status because more people notice. I would rather get a comment on my facebook, because more people can show their appreciation at one time. Someone can also comment and tell me what I need to do to do better than what I am doing. This is what makes a comment come first than a compliment in person.


I would want someone to give me a compliment in real life because it’s face to

face and you know they mean what they’re saying. Facebook comments are the same but you don’t know if friends mean what they are saying. I think compliments are better because they are more meaningful to you.


I would rather have someone give me a complement in person than on my Facebook

status. The reason why I prefer a complement in person is because when you comment a status everyone can see it and people may be all up in your business, and most people don’t like that. So Instead of people knowing what I talk about with my friends on Facebook I’d rather talk in person and have a good time with out spectators.