Facebook Friend Request Netiquette

Treat people online as you would face to face. Treat people with compassion, empathy, kindness and consideration. Would you invite a stranger into your home, shows up outside your door, no name, no idea what they want, but they expect to come in, make themselves right at home? That is what YOU are doing when you Friend Request strangers or people who barely know you or haven’t heard from you in a long time.

Facebook friend requests means sending a message to everyone before you send a friend request. Only exception are people you know well in real life, with strong history, so they remember you if it’s been awhile.

A passing acquaintance, someone you just met, or a stranger mandates a proper introduction. Include your intentions and goals. Why do you want to be friends? Facebook limits each personal profile to 5,000 names. They added Followers as a means to exceed that number. Facebook Fan Pages offer unlimited Likes.

Many set their profiles to private or friends of friends. So when people respond to their friend request by looking at their profile, there is very little to see.  Or there’s so little posted, it’s impossible to see if there’s any basis for a friendship, anything in common. You can see my profile but I can’t see yours. You want something from someone and you don’t give a clue. Is that fair or right?

Basic, common sense. Yet 97% of Facebook uses are oblivious to these facts, although easily accessible on numerous websites, as well as Facebook itself.

Imagine this: you are walking down the street. Someone likes what you are wearing, overhears something you say, or recognizes you because you might be known. That person wants to come into your home, but you don’t know their intentions. Is this encounter worth your time, can you trust them, and why should you say yes?

Facebook has its rules. People have their boundaries. Nothing worse than people who send friend requests and then you never hear from them again. They don’t comment, they don’t interact, they only post about their businesses or what they ate. Who wants or needs friends like that?

Yet MOST people behave like the rude strangers I’ve described. Why is that? I truly don’t know. I do know my friends and I won’t go there. Think about that the next time you friend Request on Facebook.

If you don’t know them, consider using FOLLOW if that’s an option. That is MY preferred method for strangers or people I do not know well. Thank you.

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