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Status updates 101

Irena Zajickova | Monday, April 26, 2010

 As a second-semester senior, I spend a lot of time surfing Facebook as I attempt to put off what little work my senioritis-friendly schedule gives me. My all-time favorite Facebook activity is looking at people’s photo albums — even people I haven’t spoken to since freshman year, high school or even never.


My other favorite thing to do is read status updates. It’s like listening to your friends talk about their lives without actually wasting time talking to them. What could be better?
Unfortunately, while photo stalking is pretty much always amusing, the news feed or “recently updated statuses” link is full of pitfalls. 
Some people overshare, others post obnoxious song lyrics, and still others talk about subjects so boring that if they tried to tell me about it in person I’d probably just walk away. 
To help out the status-challenged, I’ve compiled a handy list of dos and don’ts. 
Do: Update your status if something really exciting happens. If you got a job or got into law school, by all means, tell all of Facebook. Especially if you’re like me and no one thought you’d be able to find a future. What better way to prove all the haters wrong than through your Facebook status?
Don’t: Update your status with endless detailed lists of the papers and projects you’re saddled with. I’m pretty sure that everyone else here has a similar workload. Also, I’m pretty sure that if you were really as busy as your status claimed, you’d drop dead of exhaustion. 
Do: Keep your status short. If I wanted to read a novel, I wouldn’t be on Facebook.
Don’t: Write about how you’re having the worst day ever. There’s a 99 percent chance you’re not, and if you’re in that one percent that actually is having a truly horrible day, you should probably get off Facebook and start trying to fix your life.
Do: Post witty quotes from TV shows and/or movies. It’s a nice break from the endless lists of projects and papers everyone else is status-updating about, and your friends will have fun commenting with other quotes from the same movie or show, so you’ll have the added bonus of looking like you’re really popular.
Don’t: Post overly dramatic statuses that sound like a 13-year-old girl wrote them. I don’t care about how you’re never going to find love or how [insert name here] is the best boyfriend in the world. Doing this will just make me want to defriend and/or punch you. This is doubly true if the status has heart icons in it or is written with poor spelling or CaPiTaLiZaTiOn LiKe tHiS. 
I thought of a few more guidelines, but I’ve already exceeded the word limit for Inside Columns, and I don’t think tonight’s production team will be too enthusiastic to reformat all of Page 2 just so I can discuss Facebook etiquette. I hope this helps. 
Now if you’ll excuse me, I have 10 papers, two presentations and three tests tomorrow, so I’m clearly having the worst day ever! I have to go study!