March 11, 2013
Society and Social Networks
Hal Niedzviecki’s essay, “Facebook in a Crowd,” emphasizes the difference between acquiring social network friends and acquiring real friends. When Niedzviecki logged on to Facebook, he realized he was close to having 700 online “friends” (958). But being that he didn’t know them personally like he knew his previous friends, he decided to have a Facebook party. After tabulating the responses, 15 people said they were attending, 60 people said maybe, a few hundred said not, and the rest ignored the invitation (958-59). However, on the day of the party one person named Paula showed up. According to him, “For chipping away at past friendships and blocking honest new efforts, you really have to blame the modern world. People want to hang out with you, I assured myself. They just don’t have the time” (Niedzviecki 960). Niedzviecki acquired 700 online friends, but spent the rest of his night drinking alone. He insists that society relies on social networks entirely too much to meet or interact with people. I agree that society is becoming too reliant on social networks to meet people because my experience on a social network confirms it. First of all, I agree that society relies on social networks too much because social networking is much easier to communicate or meet people. Online communication allows people to communicate with people freely and openly. Also, if people can be themselves without hesitating or if they choose not to interact with people they can simply leave the site. Yet, social network users meet a bigger variety of people online and can interact with them without certain hindrances people would experience when communicating in real life. In Niedzviecki’s essay, he states “I logged on to Facebook and realized that I was very close to having 700 online friends” (958). Niedzviecki managed to acquire that many friends online better than he would have attempted to...