Who do you share information with, who do you follow-up with, and how much of your time do you spend on social networking sites?
What happens when you think critically about your connections?
I usually do a Facebook friend clean-up about twice a year. It sounds awful to say, but like clothes, there are just some friends that worth keeping, and others not. Think about it: Which friends do you actually talk to (and I mean whose voice you hear every now and then)? Whose wall do you post back on, send messages to, or receive messages from?
Scientific research places a human’s actual social network capacity at around 150 people with whom they can maintain a genuine social relationship. This number is pretty much dictated by the size of our neocortex.
So why did I have over 350 Facebook connections? Do I have a huge brain? No. I have a clutter of friends (more like acquaintances, really) that need to be purged. I’ve started this clean-up just today and have already gotten rid of 200 people I don’t really care about, and in an effort to be critical about whom I chose to surround myself with, I will attempt to make it down to 75.
Too Much of a Good Thing? Facebook friendships, just like material possessions, are a means of comparison to other people in our networks, so much so that in scholar articles they are referred to as social capital. How many friends do you need to keep up with the Joneses? Plenty of Facebook users get obsessed with how many people comment on their statuses, reply to their comments, and over post some kind of acknowledgement of their social capital. In a minimalist initiative, I am inviting you to remove your Facebook alter-ego’s false friends from your profile and rediscover your true network.