2 reasons I didn’t do what you wanted me to do on Facebook…

I often see posts on Facebook that express frustration that a friend didn’t follow through and meet the expectations of the person who is venting. A friend failed to ‘like’ a post. They didn’t reply, share, or re-post a status.

There are (at least) 2 possible reasons for this….

  1. Your friend simply didn’t see what you wanted them to see. Contrary to popular belief, Facebook does not show you every post from every friend or group that you are connected with. Facebook uses a complex and unpublished algorithm to decide which posts to show you, and which to filter out. It is entirely possible that your friend simply didn’t see your request.
  2. Your request was passive aggressive. There is a Facebook meme going around right now that starts with “I know that many of my friends will ignore this, but….”.
    Sorry, but to me, that’s insulting. The best way to get me to do something is NOT to tell me that I probably won’t.

Bottom line, misunderstandings and missed expectations are exponentially more likely in electronic communication than in person to person interaction, because of all the missing, subtle context cues. A suggestion: Give your friends the benefit of the doubt?

PS: If you are curious about how the Facebook news feed filters the posts that you see, this is an interesting article.

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