Tuesday, November 3, 2009

My "Interview" with a Facebook Programmer

ME: This interview should be fun, Mr. Facebook Programmer.

FB: It won't be fun, Me. I abhor all that facilitates social contact.

ME: Yes, I could tell from the constant changes you make to Facebook.

FB: More are coming. Next week we're going to change everyone's passwords, scramble people's names, and randomly deface people's profile pictures.

ME: Seems about right. What else?

FB: The Search box will now be located on another web site. The friend request system will be done away with altogether. Plus, anything previously activated by a left mouse button click will now require a sequence of right mouse button, escape, escape, shift-7, caps lock, delete.

ME: Why?

FB: Because people don't get it. FB isn't about reading and posting stuff for way too long. If it were, FB would be a mind-numbing productivity killer. By regularly introducing obstructive changes that people have to figure out, Facebook has become the #1 site that challenges the intellect and furthers the evolution of a smarter race of humans.

ME: Wow. So you're actually trying to do me, as an FB user, a favor.

FB: Exactly. This is why we also started screening out posts we know for a fact wouldn't interest you, or that would cost you several IQ points just to look at. It's how we protect and enlighten you.

ME: How else do you do that?

FB: Sometimes we screw with posts, dumbing them down. This is so you can feel smarter-than-thou when you read them. Feeling smarter leads to actually being smarter. We've set it up so that every single FB user is always noticing how superior he or she is compared to friends in terms of intelligence, creativity, and wit. Also taste, decorum, humility, common sense, brevity, and self-respect. Also skill sets, health, relationships, finances, age spots –

ME: Aren't you afraid people will get fed up and never return to Facebook?

FB: That could never happen. So many users are so heavily addicted to FB that we programmers could do absolutely anything, and they would still spend hours a day navigating around the site. I'm proud to say we're like drug dealers. Drugs actually build brain cells, despite evidence to the contrary. I should know, because I'm on drugs myself.

ME: Yes, that does explain a lot. How old are you, by the way?

FB: I'm five. That's why I like things my way and don't give a crap what anyone else wants. It's ironic that I'm actually too young to even join FB myself.

ME: When you turn 13, will you join?

FB: No, because FB won't be around in eight years. It will have completed its mission of advancing the human race, and people will have moved beyond FB, beyond computers even. We'll be back to the much more stimulating social contact that involved actually talking to people and seeing them face to face.

ME: Oh, so you want a return to the "good old days."

FB: No, I just want people to be more exposed to Facebook's ads.

ME: How will that happen if Facebook disappears because as you say people become "too smart" to use it anymore, or because they don't want to keep up with the changes, or they just get sick of it?

FB: Gosh darn. I did not think this through.

ME: Bingo. That's all your users are really trying to tell you about every change you make.

FB: I'm sorry but it seems that suddenly, no hablo ingles.