When Kerry asked me to write something for SESSIONS, I was dumbfounded on what to come up with. Then while we chatted during his interview, he was looking at his phone amused at how a so called friend of his on Facebook had no idea what he had just posted. He found this odd yet amusing. I wasn't surprised at all. Told him it was the Anatomy of the Unfollow. He asked what I meant by this?
It's simple actually and a sign of our times. The friend who is not actually a friend. Look at Facebook, Instagram or Twitter, these "friends" who have close to 1000 friends or more, do you really think they know every 1000? It's doubtful. Welcome to the way our world works and how sad, cold and impersonal it is. Remember in junior high when you had to stand in a line as the gym teacher chose two favorites to be captains to any kind of demoralizing basketball, football or baseball game. Each cool kid captain would first select their best friends, then kids they knew were good at whatever sport was set to be agonized over for 45 minutes of class. Then they would get down to maybe the last four then down to two. These were the leftovers. The kids who were not the best at sports. Too short, over weight, the uncoordinated, etc..The coach said that everyone had to play. 24 kids in a class, then each HAD to take at least 2 to 4 they didnt want, to makeup 12. If you were one of the last two, then you were only on the team to make a number. You were on the team sure, but odds are you were ignored and never played. The cool kids only recognized you if they found a way to use you. Not a real friend, not an actual team member, you were just a number. You were being used. If they didn't need you then you were kicked back to the bench. Welcome to the Anatomy of the Unfollow. There are many these days who use you only to make their friends list look big, their popularity over flowing. A friend who you really never felt was that close to you, might friend you, but eventually you find that they have no idea what is going on in your life, no clue to something you have shared. How could this be? Because Facebook has made it very easy these days to keep a friend, use them to make your numbers look big, yet you have the option to Unfollow. So, they are good enough to add to your numbers, but you don't want to hear anything about their life. You are a user. This guy or girl you thought, hey?? They must really like me. Nope! They are using you. Probably at some point you voiced something that they found boring, off color, insulting, or below their standards. They have to keep you to make them look good, yet they don't want to hear your shit. So, click,....they Unfollow. I'm sure there are those of you that are sitting there thinking that this is unfair. But let's face reality. Odds are you use people. Or you are that friend, who to the persons face are caring and kind, then they turn a back and you are either sticking a knife in it, talking about them or your caring smile goes away and you are rolling eyes to all they talk about. You my friend are a user. A douche!! More and more with the Social Network becoming part of our daily live you are seeing this type fo false friends.
Instagram is worse. Friends you may know, or complete strangers, will follow you, hang around for 24 hours or less then drop you cold. Yet you might not even notice because it's not just one who is doing this, it's many. You can even Google the process, how these users might do this. Or better yet, you get involved with one of those sites that promise you 1000 followers, so your IG looks over booked with dedicated followers. Only to find that 80% of them drop off in a day or two, and what you have left are just as desperate as you are to have followers. This goes for Twitter as well.
We've come to an age of connecting yet being used then dumped but never actually knowing you have been passed on. So do you have real friends? It's hard to say. Social Network allows many to hide behind the Wizards curtain. They use you, pull strings and make it all look good, yet you eventually find it's all smoke and mirrors. Call it the bully that hides behind friendship and there you have, the Anatomy of the Unfollow. Sad world we live in folks, what is even worse? It's all socially acceptable.