Recently, Facebook hit a milestone by reaching a billion members. They subsequently decided to make their first ever advert. Strange train of thought, don’t you think? We’ve just secured the membership of 1/7 of the world’s population – let’s start promoting! When this advert for Facebook popped up on my Facebook news feed, I watched it. I was left dumbfounded by it’s stupidity. TIMW_BRAP seized the opportunity to express his outrage in a column. I say seized because there were at least 2 of us that wanted to do the same thing but he beat us to it. I wrote about Gangnam Style and Asians instead, but it was kinda related. Tim seemed to think that reaching 1 billion wasn’t even that great an achievement but I think it is. This post is about the same sort of thing.
You really have to have read Tim’s to properly get this.
As I was reading through his fiery emotions I was agreeing with everything he was saying. But as it went on my opinion started to change. He was basically saying exactly what I was thinking when I first saw the ad, but hearing it come from someone else made me think deeper about it. To us, the advert was retarded and made Facebook look like idiots. But that’s ok. We already have Facebook. As Tim said, we’re not going to delete our Facebook account because of some stupid advert. We hate Facebook already – we bitch about it all the time. No one deleted their account when timeline got forced upon us, because we enjoyed bitching about it, and Facebook was the essential tool to let everyone know that we hated Facebook. We don’t need to be advertised to because we’re already hooked. We are the 1 billion.
So when Zuckerberg’s panel of evil super-villains had successfully enslaved a billion-strong army of powerless drones, he thought to himself, “Right, let’s get the rest of them.”
‘Them’ being second and third world inhabitants who are only just being introduced to the concept of a personal computer and the internet.
So if you were trying to advertise a complex, integrated, online social networking site to someone who may or may not have a reliable source of electricity, how would you go about it?
You’d make Facebook just seem like one of those everyday things that they know and understand. A chair. A bridge. A facebook. It’s simple. It’s not complicated and irrelevent and futuristic and unnecessary – it’s a rudimentary tool for communication. And they need it. It’s just another clever twist that advertisers add to make you think you need something that you really don’t. Don’t you just hate those advertising wankers?
Also, most of these new people that Facebook are trying to reach will not speak English. They’ll learn it at school. Some will learn to speak English up to a very basic level. What are the words that they’ll learn? Chair? Plane? Doorbell at a stretch? Maybe. Communicate? Socialize? Connect? Stalk? I doubt it. Facebook’s aim is for the word ‘Facebook’ to be such a key word in the English language that an 8-year old Zimbabwean child will learn it on the same day that she learns ‘boy’, ‘girl’, ‘cat’ and ‘dog’.
As terrible as the guys at Facebook are, they know what they’re doing.
As for the last bit about the universe and being alone and stuff, that was the part that I hated the most. The woman basically tries to claim that Facebook helps to remind us that we are not alone in the universe. As a long-time Facebook member I know that, in fact, Facebook helps to educate us about a completely different and almost polar opposite truth: people are mostly idiots and self-centred douchebags and should any visiting aliens see the kind of crap that comes out of our mouths sometimes they would regret ever going near this god-forsaken planet.
It’s actually real-life social interaction and the wonderous beauty of nature that cause us to ask questions about our existence and other being’s existence and cherish the life that we share with the real people around us.
Many third-world countries are lucky enough to still have access to these kind of luxuries. Hopefully they can see through Facebook’s lies and say “No thanks, we’re fine like this.”
Maybe I’m being melodramatic, and I’m aware this conclusion pretty much completely contradicts the whole point of my last post. Maybe it’s because East Asians will probably have an effect on my life at some point and Africans probably won’t, so I want different things for each. For now people in places like Africa really should concentrate on finding someone to run their country who doesn’t immediately steal as much money as possible and go on a vicious killing spree, before they think about finding out who their ex-girlfriend has replaced them with.