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February 24, 2014

My love affair, and break-up, with Facebook

(Continued)

As technology progressed and we grew into upperclassmen, some of my friends even logged in during class on their smart phones. We often joked that two people were not officially friends until they were friends on Facebook. Although I’m not so sure it was completely a joke.

Over the course of my four years at college, I racked up more than 2,000 pictures and almost 500 friends. Birthday posts, silly late-night messages, pictures of fun adventures ... all of it was captured in an on-going scrapbook of sorts, ready for me to look back on and reminisce about whenever I wanted.

When graduation hit, I didn’t want to admit I would have to leave that life behind. Facebook had been a major part of my college experience, so I kept it to stay in touch with friends. Many of my friends felt the same way.

Some of my peers who were education majors had changed their Facebook names during our senior year to appear more professional for future student-teaching placements or jobs, replacing their last name with their middle name or spelling it in a unique way. This was after we were all warned by our academic advisers that employers check your profile before your resume is even glanced at. I still don’t know if that rumor is true (maybe I should ask my editor).

But I do know of a couple of different young professionals who got themselves into trouble after posting drunk pictures of themselves or inappropriate statuses regarding their workplace.

The first person in my world who got rid of Facebook was one of my roommates, Sami. She was an education major and had a modified profile name for years but finally decided to bite the bullet after we graduated. I missed her presence online, and it required more of an effort to contact her, but I cared enough about her to make it work: texting, calling or emailing occasionally to catch up. Wouldn’t people do the same for me if I chose to leave? The thought crossed my mind, but I wasn’t ready yet.

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