The Silent Majority of Facebook

Today’s topic is a brief post, but a thought provoking one.

I am a very outgoing, sharing, “out there” kind of person. You can tell who and what I am just by following me on Facebook.  A lot of acquaintances and old friends follow my life on Facebook, and I know this since when I see them I hear that they know more about me and do not need updates as they already have them!

I’m on the wedding and birthday party circuit these days (future blog) and I am seeing a lot of people I don’t see on a regular basis. There are your close friends, your more extended friends, your friends-of-friends, and your acquaintances. I see every sort from those categories at these functions.

Just last weekend four people congratulated me on my daughter’s big promotion that I posted on Facebook, yet it still surprised me that they knew because they never commented on Facebook. In fact, that particular post received 25o plus “likes” and 58 comments, and none were by the acquaintances mentioning it to me.

What I am repeatedly learning is that MOST people on Facebook follow other’s lives silently. They don’t “like” photos, comment to posts, or comment to blogs. But they read, they follow, and they appreciate all the same. I call them the silent majority of Facebook. Some call them stalkers, and though I think that is a bit harsh, it always surprises me how many can follow my life with nary a comment until they see me in person.

I must have heard from a dozen people recently, if not more, what my kids were doing, about past blogs I have written, or about photos posted. These are people that have never, ever commented or given me any indication that they even look at my Facebook page or blog. One quoted at least four events from the past year.

Yes, people are watching.  I’ve heard this before and I always bump into acquaintances and friends of friends in Houston where I live, where people comment on a blog or something going on in my life yet I never knew they read or followed because there was never an acknowledgement before.

I am just the opposite of this. I am a communicator!!

If I am going to invest the time on Facebook, I am going to let people know I saw their photos, their statuses, and I comment on many things. I am also a serial “Liker” – hitting that “like” button way too much.

I am not, and have never been the silent type in any forum in life, in person, or on a social media site. That’s just the way I am built.

Yet it is slowly dawning on me that MOST people are not like me. They enjoy seeing other’s good news, photos, read blogs, etc, and never, ever let on that they had viewed any of it.

Really these silent types are no more stalkers than I am. Just because I am vocal about my Facebook presence, doesn’t mean I am not checking things out, just like all the silent types.

Their silence doesn’t bother me, although it used to. When I published my blog in a newspaper I used to get tons of public comments – you know those anonymous commenters I am speaking of that do this on every publication? Then when I moved the blog to my own site, the comments were few and far between. I get lots of emails, and comments on Facebook, but then I look at my analytics and tons more people are reading than every commenting. I don’t demand to be “liked” for my blogs or my photos. I am more than happy to share with them even if they don’t make their presence known. It always surprises me though.

So if you are a Silent Majority member of Facebook, raise your hand. It is safe to do so, because I won’t know you saw this, nor will anyone else. It will just be our little secret.

3 comments

  • I’m pretty sure I’ve never been silent a day in my life. I talk to everyone and as far as Facebook, I have a hard time NOT commenting on everything. I know all about those silent stalkers though. You’re 100% right on. I will see an old acquaintance and they’ll mention something about me that I’m surprised they know, only to find out they saw it on Facebook. And of course, they also tell me what you have heard. They just like to read everyone else’s posts. They don’t really like to comment.

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