Facebook users appear to be beginning to realize that their Facebook friends will never be their actual, in-real-life friends – and women especially have began to trim down their digital buddy lists. According to a Pew study, more users are also untagging themselves from photos, deleting comments and cleaning up wall posts. And women and younger users tend to streamline the most – 67% of women with social network profiles have unfriended someone, compared to 58% of men.
Woman have also been limiting friend access to their accounts more so than men, with roughly the same 9% difference. Though interestingly, only 8% of women claim to regret something they’d posted on Facebook, compared to 15% of men. It has been recently reported that 91% of employers use sites like Facebook to screen potential hires. Perhaps this has something to do with these social media preening trends. Likewise, users are perhaps realizing that their online personas are becoming a more legitimate means of general life-screening, and have become conscious of better discerning the difference between what they would do and say online, and what they would do and say in actual, real life.
Personally, I know for a FACT that women are defriending people more than the men on Facebook. I also know that not much “about me” on any social networking sites is very “real-life.” Which is likely not good, in hindsight. Alas, I will be doing some internet social snipping after considering these studies. Still, the reports seem to point to the notion that users might be calming down as social media loses it’s general brand-newness. The practice of liking and friending everything in sight has maybe slowed a bit, as the fog clears from the initial visual/motor rapture achieved whilst befriended 73 strangers at once. Oh yeah, and the actual consequences thing also might have something to do with the new trends. Binary friends are really great, but not great enough to possibly get in the way of in-real-life moneymaking activities, like jobs.