Monday, August 22, 2011

Facebook Friends

I always wondered whether Facebook and other such social networking sites actually help in making friends, or strengthening one's relations with the existing friends. I always saw Facebook as a place where people became 'friends' with others but never got connected with them. People made friends on Facebook whom they even didn't talk to ever. And some guys and gals used Facebook as a 'date search' forum to find out somebody to have a date with.

That's why I was probably one of the last few persons in my class to make a profile on Facebook. Even when I joined Facebook, it was a mere 'time pass' activity where I whiled away my boredom or just killed my extra time. I confess that Facebook became an integral part of my life but only the way the 'idiot box' becomes an integral part of some people's life. They spend a lot of time with it but get nothing out of it in return except for time waste.

But lately, my viewpoint about these online social networking sites and online friendships has changed. Okay let me rephrase it by saying that my viewpoint has slightly altered. I would have never become a good friend with Chirag had it not been for the online chats we use to do regularly. I think the amount of conversation we have had in one year after leaving the college must be at least four times more than the total conversation we had in the four years of college. And most of the conversation after college has been online, that too only through chats. The Outcome: A stronger friendship between us!

Similarly, had it not been Facebook, I would have never even known Nithya and Aman. I came to know about both of them through the PRS (Lamp Fellowship) page and as a result got to meet these people, with whom I have spent nice times. And I must thank Zukerberg today for making something as good as Facebook that I am friends with both of them. Hope many more nicer times are in the line! Both of you guys listening?

Not that after praising 'Facebook and online chat boxes' above, I have ,all of a sudden, become greatest of fans of these things. I still believe that the value of time these kill is much more than the value of 'total benefits' (which include the drawbacks of addiction, getting into wrong habits of random chat boxes discussing  'not so good' stuff etc) which these offer. But it again depends on the individual how to use these 'online goodies' for his/her own benefit!

And who cares if one gets to strengthen the circle of friends around? At least I don't! :-)