In my social networks, I have a few friends with consistently fantastic, virtual-high-five-worthy status updates. They crack me up, they teach me new things, and they challenge me to up my game. So it is with no length of time spent and little deliberation that I’ve determined a new level of checks and balances should be introduced to our social networks. It’s time to place a moratorium on social freedom of speech. Much like the first comment posted to a blog or the creation of a long-winded dating profile, the “post” button on social updates should be changed to “submit for moderation.”
This new system – applying to status updates, tweets, retweets, comments, likes, and photo posts – would require a one month trial period before the user would be able to resume speaking their mind sans moderation. A simple algorithm (post engagement minus frivolous likes multiplied by the coefficient of awesomeness) would determine who among your social network is sufficiently skilled to perform the audit.
Your peer auditor will be looking for the following:
Lazy Likes: If your friend posts, “eating the world’s best apple,” do not be tempted to break the awkward silence by clicking the “like” button. Let’s not encourage this behavior.
Declarations of Love: Messages like these are better received via boom-box-over-head, drunk text, or scribbled in crayon on a Scooby Doo Valentine.
Self-Pity: Please please please don’t tell your 752 closest friends that your goldfish died. We need to get news like this in person.
Go Packers!: No.
Inspirational Quotes: Gandhi and Bon Jovi both have their own Facebook page.
One Worders: If you’re “tired,” “hungry,” “sick,” “freezing,” or “bored,” just fix it.
Frustration: If you can’t find your car in the parking garage, a barista got your latte wrong, or anything else happened that you might see in an episode of Seinfeld, please understand we are here to escape from our own mind-numbing daily trials and not to comment on yours.
TV Philosophy: Your expertly crafted viewpoint on who will be kicked off this week’s episode of The Bachelor will immediately advance you to the end of your trial period. Keep it comin’.
If you invented the double decker PB&J on waffles, I must get the recipe immediately. If you need to know what that shot with the Butterscotch Schnapps and Bailey’s is called, I’ll be your first comment. If Vince Vaughan just invited you to his dog’s half birthday party, I will click “like.” If your son got purple finger paint all over your white couch, do post a picture. But to avoid your moderator hitting the “not approved” option on your next post, save up all the great small talk material for the elevator.