The 7 Facebook Personalities


On Feb 4th, 2004, Skynet Facebook launched a volley of nuclear warheads, forever altering the human landscape.

Millions of years of normal, healthy socialization were undone.

Entire cultures were annihilated.

Men’s bathroom selfies creeped the world out.

Women’s bathroom selfies became infinitely more accessible.

Cheating became 1,000% easier.

From the ashes of this terrifying event arose seven (yes seven, because I said so) Facebook personalities. We all know them. We’ve all seen them. We all ARE at least one of them.

The 7 Prime Facebook Personalities

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Catmeme  THE NORMAL – Your everyday, ordinary Facebook user. She doesn’t post all that often. When she does, it’s usually a mildly funny meme, a photo of her better-looking-than-your kids, or a picture of her dog, her cat, and her hamster. You’re rarely lucky enough to get any controversy from the Normal, which is a shame, because everyone loves it when a Facebooker’s life implodes.



THE SHARER – Now we’re getting somewhere. We all know Sharers. Actually, we all probably know several. This is the lady who seldom posts any actual life statuses. Instead, 4-6 times per day (every day) she posts a big pile of snarky eCard memes or links to other sites. The links and pics usually involve drinking wine, hating Mondays, tormenting their spouses, or drinking wine. On the rare occasion the Sharer posts something about their actual life, it’s usually about, you guessed it, drinking wine.



THE POLITICIAN – Oh yeah, you know you’ve got one of these friends. Or maybe you ARE this guy. You know, the one who really, really, really, really, really hates Obama. Or who really, really, really, really, really thinks Fox News is the vilest thing ever.  Honestly, a good rant is fun to read. It persuades no one (ever) but even so… At least we know the Politician hates approx. half his own Facebook friends. Fastest way to get un-friended: contradict this guy. Go ahead. Try it.



Instagram GirlTHE SELFIE-IST – Ok, in all fairness, this archetype is probably better looking than the rest of us. They’ve got better abs and an ass that won’t quit. If the lights are down and our girlfriends are asleep, we’d consider getting off to one of their photos, but would be too ashamed (so instead we visit Pornhub.) How do we know the SELFIE-IST is hotter? Easy. Because every single day they post at least ten pictures of themselves in halter tops, yoga pants, and muscle shirts. Sometimes in the mirror. Sometimes not. But always holding up their cell phone. Go ahead. Enjoy it. ‘Like’ their pics. Every time you do, you bring them at least 2 seconds of happiness.

LeavingTHE QUITTER – The picture pretty much says it. Personally, I know at least two people among my friends who quit Facebook twice a week only to pop right back up.  It’s always, “I’m done! I can’t handle the drama! Someone said something mean! This world isn’t for me!” But three hours later, all is forgotten. As in literally. No one will likely ever know why they quit in the first place.

And no one will ever care.


VagueTHE VAGUEBOOKER – Oh boy. This one’s trouble. The Vaguebooker takes many forms, all of them nefarious. Sometimes they’ll post something short and simple, such as, “Tough day. Not feelin’ it,” thus fish-hooking a pile of sympathetic responses. And then there’s the, “To that sumbitch who said that thing about me and my family. We ALL know who you are. And we hate you.” Except no one’s really sure who the sumbitch is or what they did. Plus it’s obvious they’re not that big of a sumbitch, because the Vaguebooker didn’t actually un-friend them. They remained friends so the sumbitch in question might read the Vaguebooker’s vicious, scathing post and be forever humbled. My one request to the VB’er: be specific. Call a muthafucker out on the carpet by name. Start a real flamewar. It’s much more entertaining for the rest of us.

Morpheus THE GAMER –  Candy Crush, anyone? Game of War? City of Losers? War of Noodles? (Ok, I made up the last two.) In all fairness, the Gamer probably doesn’t know he just spammed all his friends with game requests. He’s probably amazing at Game of Kate Upton’s Boobs, but still hasn’t mastered the art of changing Facebook notification settings. What’s a faster way to get unfriended than contradicting a Politician? Repeatedly sending game invites to every single one of your friends. Find the settings button, people. Find it, and use it. Or even better…write your quick status post, ‘Like’ something, and get the F@#k off Facebook before it eats your soul.


THE SALESMAN (I’m guilty as charged)

THE TMI’er (When NORMALS go rogue)

THE TAGGER (Quit tagging me. Or die)

THE NOMAD (Makes one post every 3-6 months, then vanishes)

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That’s it.

I’m done.

I’ll be seriously disappointed if I don’t get un-friended by at least 3 people after they read this.


J Edward Neill

Check out my party-bombing Coffee Table Philosophy series here.

The Case for (and against) Social Media





 It’s an antisocial world.

There, I said it.

I’m old enough to remember when life was different. Don’t get me wrong; I’m not complaining about the way it is now. I’m sitting here on my couch, laptop in lap, using my iPad as a mouse pad, streaming Hans Zimmer through my Bose Bluetooth mobile speakers. For writers, life has never been easier. Twenty years ago, we had to handwrite everything…offline…on paper…with strange little instruments called pencils. If we needed to do critical research, we had to shuttle down to gloomy places known as libraries. There was no meaningful internet, no Google, no cell phones. Word processing was far from refined. Hell, even the image above (created with GIMP) I would’ve had to hand-draw. Creating this document would’ve taken me the entire day. As is, I’m expecting to spend an hour on it, and not a minute more.

So yeah, we’ve got it made these days. We’ve got wireless internet, primo software, smart phones, Wikipedia, and Kindle. All the peripheral gunk that used to slow us down has been carved away. It should be just us and the words, no boundaries between me the writer and you the reader.

But there’s a catch. You know what it is. If you’ve ever sat down to write, read, or work meaningfully at a computer, you’ve been sidetracked. If you’ve ever needed to market yourself, pitch an idea, or slap the world in the face with your latest epic creation, you’re familiar with what I’m talking about. Don’t deny it. Don’t be ashamed. It happens. Look. Right there. See the space between the ‘s’ in ‘happens’ and the period? I just did it right there. I checked Twitter, retweeted a picture, and checked Facebook to catch up with a new follower. See? I’m guilty as charged.

Tibetan Skull

Tibetan skull carving. Too cool not to retweet. Go ahead. Buy me one for Christmas. It’s never too late.

Perhaps you begin to see where I’m going with this. I’m not bashing Twitter, Facebook, or any other social outlet. Far from it. I’m happy to have access to these amazing resources with which to harass my friends and frienemies, spread the word about my books, link to my blogs, and post ridiculous photos of skulls, swords, and whatever gruesome shots of myself the web will let me get away with.

It’s just that, even though we might think they are, these resources aren’t free. Not even close. If time is money (and it is, I promise you) I’m pretty sure I spend thousands of virtual dollars in web-marketing every year. For every hour I save by having access to a laptop, an iPad, and the internet, I’m willing to bet I lose nearly as much in creating a permanent web presence. I blog. I link to my blog. I post excerpts, cover art, and alternate cover art. I tweet, retweet, and  chat with other awesome artists. I edit my web stuff as much as I do my real work, and that’s because self-marketing in this day and age is real work. Anymore, it feels like writing books is the easy part. Much harder is being genuinely connected to the world around me. It’s something to consider. Don’t let the convenience of it all fool you. There’s just as much work to be done today as ever, if not more.

And so, if I dare reminisce, don’t kill me for it. I simply pine for a bit of face-to-face interaction. I crave the convenience of the web, but from time to time I’d like to converse with my contemporaries over a glass of bourbon, a smoking candle between us, and nary a piece of technology in the room. Collaboration used to mean sitting at a table with a pen, a few sheaves of paper, and an idea floating between us. Now it’s me and you and everyone else in the world simultaneously shattering the silence with our keystrokes. I don’t hate it. Au contraire. It’s intimidating, but it’s awesome. It’s antisocial, but not really. It’s all-immersive, all the time. It’s the world we live in.

And I’m just now learning to embrace it.

Until next time…

J Edward Neill

Author of every genre

Painter of darkness