Facebook one-upmanship

By Sujay Kumar

7:21 p.m.: Sujay Kumar is excited to see The Dark Knight. 12:45 a.m.: Sujay Kumar is not a big fan of The Dark Knight’s ending. 9:10 p.m.: Sujay Kumar has received numerous threats, and is now the Facebook pariah.

Now it’s not likely that changing your Facebook status three times in twenty-four hours can lead to your appointment as the Facebook society’s outcast. But given what I’ve seen this summer, I wouldn’t be surprised if that ultimate fall were imminent.

For all you concerned parents out there, and for all of you who have successfully avoided being sucked into the online community and part-time life-stealer, you may not be aware that the Facebook world has changed.

It has evolved past its role as the watchdog of our world’s future leaders (meaning people have found ways to hold red cups and take pictures without having their lives destroyed). And for many users who have been logging in for a few years now and have found all of their old friends, Facebook is one of those rare constants they can trust in life, like the Internet’s bottled water.

The change that’s upon us is the weird emergence/revolution of a definitive Facebook culture. Now instead of trying to intellectualize what’s happening, let’s take a look at a few events that illustrate this phenomenon (we’ll substitute celebrity names for real ones).

When one of the most anticipated movies of the year released, everyone felt the need to praise the film in their status.

John Stamos is amazed at how unbelievable The Dark Knight was! Heath you really made me ask, Why so serious?

Amanda Bynes is Wow. The Dark Knight = pure awesomeness. Go see it immediately!

Howie Mandel is sooo tired from watching TDK at midnight, was it worth it? Hellll yeah.

Oprah Winfrey is Yes, TDK is a phenomenal movie and I saw it before you.

Yeah, someone actually felt the need to point out they saw the movie before everyone else. But moving on, let’s examine what happens when some students go abroad for a year, semester or even a few weeks.

Usually there’s the immediate influx of posted photo albums. These involve titles that touch our deepest emotions, such as “(insert country name) (Day or Week) (insert number).” Pictures of famous landmarks are followed by pictures of our finest youth throwing down foreign booze. Albums are often accompanied by a status such as, “A-rod is wondering how he’ll ever leave (insert city name).” Something tells me A-rod will find his way home.

It seems as if for some, Facebook has turned into a stage to say “I’m doing more than YOU are.” It’s an interesting battle to stay in the loop, while simultaneously showing others that you’re doing what they are not. In our age of wire-tapping and ultra-high security checks, it’s odd how sometimes we choose to let people in on exactly what we’re doing or how we’re feeling in our lives.

9:15 p.m.: Bob Saget thinks it’ll be alright honey, as long as that’s what you choose to do.

Sujay Kumar is a senior in biochemistry. That’s all you need to know.