- I wouldn’t want to spend time with you in person. When I start purging people from my friend list, the first question I ask is: If this person wanted to meet for drinks or dinner, would I want to hang out with him/her? If the answer is ‘No,’ buh-bye.
- You’re an opinionated asshole. Having an opinion is great. In fact, I encourage you to have a few, even if I don’t agree. And while healthy debate is one thing, there is something wrong with you if you are so militant about your beliefs that you would spout on a complete stranger’s wall, even if that stranger is MY friend. No matter how passionate you are about a topic, you should never participate in a discussion on someone else’s wall if you’ve never met them. It’s even worse when you berate them. It’s rude and disrespectful, not to mention embarrassing for me, because then I have to come up with a couple of excuses why I’m friends with an asshole like you. I’d rather keep mindnumbingly boring overshares any day.
- You never post anything. You are what’s called a “lurker,” friends who never share anything but will gamely talk about what’s going in my life or my posts. If I’m going to share a part of my life, it’s only fair that you share a part of yours. Even if it’s not an even trade.
- You don’t contribute (a corollary to #3.) Let’s be honest, I have some FB friends who I would be okay never seeing again. But if you at least contribute something to my day, whether it be telling a funny story, offering insight, or sharing articles/videos/images that are interesting, enriching or humorous, I enjoy having you around even if only virtually. But if you don’t engage with me or compel me to engage with you, what’s the point of being “friends”?
- You are a professional contact. One shouldn’t friend clients or colleagues in the first place, unless they are people you absolutely want to be friends with long after your professional connection is over, which is the general rule I follow. And even then, discretion is called for in choosing who is allowed to see the real me. Besides, Facebook really isn’t the place to make a social connection where business is concerned. Leave that to corporate lunches, sporting events, the golf course and LinkedIn.
- You’re an ex. Look, if Facebook wasn’t around, you wouldn’t be around, so why keep you in my life, albeit online only? I think it’s unhealthy to hang onto a connection like this. If my reason for friending you is to keep tabs on you, I am doing myself a disservice and not allowing myself to move on. If my reason for friending you is to show you what you are missing or how much better off I am without you, I am doing myself a disservice and not allowing myself to move on. Keeping an ex in one’s life means not getting over it. Period.
- I’ve never even met you. I used to accept friend requests from friends of friends. Most of them were really nice or funny or interesting. But at the end of the day, they’re still people I don’t really know and I’m exposing my life to them? We are turning into a society that thinks it’s okay for strangers to have this much access to our lives. And that is NOT okay, it really isn’t. Two words: Rebecca Schaeffer.
- You’re a movie quote monkey. Okay, we’ve all quoted a movie before but I unfortunately have too many quote monkeys around me that rely on movie quotes as a substitute for original thought. I find it annoying when it takes over a conversation, but downright intolerable when it goes on and on and turns irrelevant (when it goes beyond the original topic or movie and devolves into a quote exchange that only makes sense to one or two people.) When movie quoting, take a page from George Costanza: pipe in with your one-liner, enjoy the laughs and quit while you’re ahead.
- It was an accident, I swear! Every few months, when I go on a housecleaning tear, I get a little click-happy and accidentally unfriend one or two people who I really actually like. If you are that .01%, send me a friend request and I will re-friend you. If, however, I ignore your request, then it wasn’t an accident. If I block you, please know I probably hate you.