Congratulators, iconofiers, and other Facebook animals

I’ve started playing a little online game that I call guess the comments. It’s loads of fun, and involves looking at a Facebook post and then trying to guess what the comments are.

The game can be made even more interesting by trying to guess who among your friends might have commented on a postand what they might say. It isn’t as hard as it sounds. For example, I have at least three friends who will always chip in with a comment if the post involves a dog. And three others who can’t help joining any conversation that involves cats. And don’t even get me started on the compulsive birthday wishers...

The birthday, anniversary, graduation, childbirth, major-life-event congratulators are the easiest as they’re right there with their Congrats, or Way to go, or So happy for your, or God bless. God bless!?? Just when did God Bless become an acceptable thing to say to your peers? Unless of course you’re a 92-year-old great-grandmother or 87-year-old holy manneither demographic known for their heavy FB presence.

The congratulators, though kind of obvious, are fairly harmless. Unlike our second category: the selfie-applauders! You know who I’m talking about. These are people who write Wow, looking good (or some variation on that theme) under every self-absorbed portrait. Some of the portraits are selfies, some not. Most involve oversize shades and someone’s tacky, suburban interpretation of the sweet life as seen in People magazine.

So, all you selfie-applauders, please don’t applaud (or like) the profile pic, the baby pic, the holiday pic or the random partying pic. It leads to more of the same.

Then there are the mindless-optimists. They have something tritely positive to say about everything, and are known to be attracted to the self-improvement-inspirational type posts. You’ll know them from comments like: Got hit twice by lightening today. Don’t you just love a rainy day! Or, Even though I have a terrible headache after the mugging last night, I feel truly blessed and grateful.

In the old days there were people who wrote letters to the editor. In the FB age they have transmogrified into moral-outragers. Moral-outragers scour the Internet looking for outrageous thing and causes and increasingly obscure examples of man’s-inhumanity-to-man (or dogs, cats, seals, or trees). They post and comment compulsively (and copiously) on politically and socially contentious issues and seem disappointed by how little the world has changed in spite of their pointed commentary.

And sneaking into the fifth and final spot are the iconofiers, who feel that the move from cave paintings to modern languages was generally a bad idea. They’re easy to identifyjust look for smiley faces, frowny faces, winks, hearts, kisses, grins, stuck-out-tongues, and similar visual cues.

Are there other types? Sure there are... See if you can spot them, next time you go Facebooking.

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