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Creating alliances based on shared animosities!
March 25, 2012 9:34 PM   Subscribe

In an act of social media blasphemy, Texas researcher Dean Terry has added an "Enemy" feature to Facebook.
posted by dunkadunc (66 comments total) 16 users marked this as a favorite

 
This has been done before: enemybook. (Disclaimer: I know the guy who made that.)
posted by madcaptenor at 9:36 PM on March 25, 2012 [1 favorite]


"Social media blasphemy"? I like how the Chronicle of Higher Education thinks this professor had some kind of revolutionary idea when really it's pretty obvious that pretty much anyone and everyone have thought of. And the article is full of him patting himself on the back and talking about how face-book is totally going to ban his groundbreaking app with 300 users.
posted by delmoi at 9:42 PM on March 25, 2012 [8 favorites]


Look at how incredibly nice the creator looks!
posted by MHPlost at 9:57 PM on March 25, 2012


*ahem*

Five years ago.
posted by Asparagirl at 9:57 PM on March 25, 2012


No nemesis button?

What about frenemy?

Awkward Aquaintance?

Person I knew at high school?

Former partner?
posted by sien at 9:58 PM on March 25, 2012 [4 favorites]


No no no, you have to Friend your enemies, how else are you going to keep them closer?
posted by Chekhovian at 9:58 PM on March 25, 2012 [15 favorites]


finally, anti-social media!
posted by mannequito at 10:01 PM on March 25, 2012 [5 favorites]


That's called pornography.
posted by KokuRyu at 10:09 PM on March 25, 2012


So it's like the unsuggester, but for facebook?
posted by kenko at 10:10 PM on March 25, 2012


Didn't we used to have that here?
posted by Chocolate Pickle at 10:10 PM on March 25, 2012


For the past six months my research group has been looking into an app that explores social dissonance on Facebook... As to how it fits in with the research agenda of my lab...

It's so weird to hear about app building described in these terms. I need to get myself a lab coat.
posted by the jam at 10:15 PM on March 25, 2012


I just add my enemies on Orkut.
posted by klangklangston at 10:20 PM on March 25, 2012 [5 favorites]


If you're over 20 and have actual "enemies", Facebook not allowing you to explicitly identify them is the least of your problems.
posted by 0xFCAF at 10:20 PM on March 25, 2012 [27 favorites]


I suggest "keep close" and "keep closer" buttons.
posted by Zed at 10:26 PM on March 25, 2012 [4 favorites]


There's definitely a certain type of person who you're sort of obligated to have as a friend, even if you hate them: You work closely together, grew up together, you're related.

But that's what privacy settings are for. We're "friends," but I don't see anything they post and they don't see anything I post. Everybody's happy.
posted by drjimmy11 at 10:30 PM on March 25, 2012 [2 favorites]


This is the sort of thing that doesn't totally burnish the credentials of the academe, nor the journalists who breathlessly report on it. "Hey hey hey! You know that piece of software that does one thing? What if we created a piece of useless software that does the opposite, in a way that sounds flashy but completely misses the point? We'll call it blasphemy!"

Well, you guys just wait until you see my addition to Twitter, that lets you type 280 characters in a tweet - it upends our expectations of the microblogging format and exposes users to the frankly dangerous idea that short posts might not always be short. Then stick around for my version of 4chan where everyone has names. My version of eBay where sellers buy things and buyers sell things! My YouTube hack that plays smells instead of videos! My version of Google+ that has people on it!

That's right. I'm gonna subvert the Internet so hard the tech-trends editor at USA Today is gonna think he woke up in Soviet Russia.
posted by bicyclefish at 10:31 PM on March 25, 2012 [24 favorites]


Personally, I've always been both fascinated and repelled by the dichotomous emotional trends of Facebook--between the structural limitation to "liking" things and the usually internet tendency toward flaming posts full of bile. It reminds me of the emotional palette of post World War II masculinity, in which Real Men have two emotions: happy or angry.

Like so many, I'd like a "dislike" button. But I'd also like a 'bemused" button, and an "intrigued" button, and "morally repulsed" button, and. . . you get the idea. Just creating an "enemy" list to counterbalance a friends list hardly constitutes something blasphemously revolutionary.
posted by DrMew at 10:32 PM on March 25, 2012 [1 favorite]


Sounds about par for the course for an academic "researching" social media. There's such a large gap between the state of the art and the published literature that lazy PhDs can make career of rediscovering things that the Web-obsessed got bored of years ago.
posted by SakuraK at 10:35 PM on March 25, 2012 [4 favorites]


when flickr first launched it had "enemy" alongside "acquaintance" "friend" "best buddy" and "soul mate" as possible social designations.

that was a billion years ago though.
posted by striatic at 10:37 PM on March 25, 2012


My enemies list:
    Arnold Picker
    Alexander Barkan
    Edwin Guthman
    Maxwell Dane
    Charles Dyson
    Howard Stein
    Allard Lowenstein
    Morton Halperin
    Leonard Woodcock
    S. Sterling Munro, Jr.
    Bernard T. Feld
    Sidney Davidoff
    John Conyers
    Samuel M. Lambert
    Stewart Rawlings Mott
    Ron Dellums
    Daniel Schorr
    S. Harrison Dogole
    Paul Newman
    Mary McGrory
    Barney Gumble

posted by "Elbows" O'Donoghue at 10:41 PM on March 25, 2012 [4 favorites]


This might get me to start using Facebook again.
posted by Ratio at 10:48 PM on March 25, 2012


I want a "hate" button to be along side the "like" button for more than just the people. So someone can post something and it would total. 9 people like this and 15 people hate this.
posted by birdherder at 10:54 PM on March 25, 2012 [2 favorites]


The only thing identifying your enemies to the world does is give them power. This is basic Manipulation 101 here.
posted by 1adam12 at 10:55 PM on March 25, 2012 [3 favorites]


Yess.. I predicted this years ago. People don't want social software. They want antisocial software. They don't want to get closer to people over the internet. They want to get rid of people, like spammers, people with opposing political viewpoints, their brother-in-law, etc. They want filters to keep that crap away. If you could filter out all the crap on the internet that you don't want, everything left would be interesting, by default.
posted by charlie don't surf at 11:00 PM on March 25, 2012 [2 favorites]


They want filters to keep that crap away. If you could filter out all the crap on the internet that you don't want, everything left would be interesting, by default.

Isn't this what Metafilter is for?
posted by shesaysgo at 11:04 PM on March 25, 2012


bicyclefish: "my addition to Twitter, that lets you type 280 characters in a tweet"

antitwitter: all posts must be at least 10,000 words
posted by idiopath at 11:04 PM on March 25, 2012 [5 favorites]


Antitwitter would have big problems with people quoting the Treaty of Westphalia in full and useless oversize ASCII art banners.
posted by idiopath at 11:05 PM on March 25, 2012 [2 favorites]


I already have an enemies list. Not online, but in a little black leather-bound book that I keep in a locked box under my bed. I only take it out when I need to add another name.

Or cross one off.

*Strokes white cat on lap*.
posted by Decani at 11:08 PM on March 25, 2012 [5 favorites]


antitwitter: all posts must be at least 10,000 words

Its called longform.org
posted by Chekhovian at 11:17 PM on March 25, 2012 [1 favorite]


I called dibs on the name DefaceBook.
posted by twoleftfeet at 11:46 PM on March 25, 2012


I keep checking fecesbook to no avial.
posted by telstar at 11:59 PM on March 25, 2012


I would do it but I'd have to switch on Timeline.
posted by oneironaut at 12:04 AM on March 26, 2012


See, this has been done before 12 times, but it wasn't published in the Journal of Tanzanian Media Buggery and therefore isn't worth citing.

Paging Alan Sokal. Paging Alan Sokal. You are needed in the "Emerging Media" department.
posted by benzenedream at 12:39 AM on March 26, 2012


Is this something I would need a Facebook account to *OW!* Where did that friggin' spatula come from?
posted by flabdablet at 1:11 AM on March 26, 2012 [4 favorites]


If you want prior art, it's been more than 10 years that Slashdot has had a Friends system that also includes Fans (people who consider you a Friend), Foes (enemies) and Freaks (persons that consider you a Foe).
posted by kandinski at 2:34 AM on March 26, 2012


I think we really need a more fine-grained system along the lines of: posted by Zarkonnen at 3:29 AM on March 26, 2012 [3 favorites]


"Hates" are really just bookmarks.
posted by Artw at 3:39 AM on March 26, 2012 [8 favorites]


I've been waiting for a Texas researcher to come along for years - Texas needs to be examined, classified, clarified, poked, prodded and generally messed with, and I think a researcher is the ideal person to do it.

Preferably a pencil-necked, geeky one from the Eastern Liberal Establishment.
posted by kcds at 3:56 AM on March 26, 2012 [1 favorite]


Also prior (and now defunct): snubster, where you could place people "On Notice" or inform them that they are "Dead to you".
posted by gauche at 4:21 AM on March 26, 2012


Wait, there are people who actually want a "dislike" button so they can be aggressively negative about each other?

I just wanted one so I could use it when awesome people post bad news. The longest and most pointless comment threads you'll ever see on Facebook are the ones you get when someone breaks their arm, and everyone wants to acknowledge it but the "like" button seems horribly inappropriate.
posted by nebulawindphone at 4:36 AM on March 26, 2012 [3 favorites]


Wanna be revolutionary? Create a NO, NEVER button for Facebook, in addition to the YES and NOT NOW options that come up whenever they come up with new crap
posted by Tom-B at 4:41 AM on March 26, 2012 [1 favorite]


random person I friended to up my friend count
childhood bully I friended to up my friend count

posted by Zarkonnen


OMG AND WE ARE FRIENDS ON SOCIAL NETWORKS!
posted by jaduncan at 4:47 AM on March 26, 2012


Ignore this request.
posted by Fizz at 5:36 AM on March 26, 2012


Add this person as your: posted by pts at 5:41 AM on March 26, 2012 [3 favorites]


I am going to friend the enemies of my enemies so hard.
posted by swift at 5:58 AM on March 26, 2012 [3 favorites]


Hey buddy; NORMAL PEOPLE DON'T HAVE ENEMIES. They have people they dislike, or even loathe, but the whole public enemy thing is best served for rappers and comic book writers.

If you have enemies in the classic sense that you need to defeat them, you're probably not spending a lot of time on Facebook. You're probably commandeering an army or leading a race war or something like that.

Plus, the idea that this isn't going to provoke fights is silly; if we've learned anything from rappers and comic book enemies, it's naive to think this will spark productive discussion, unless you consider "I'm going to shove my boot so far up your ass that you taste rubber" productive.
posted by Rodrigo Lamaitre at 6:11 AM on March 26, 2012 [1 favorite]


And of course if you do, there's FetLife.
posted by flabdablet at 6:31 AM on March 26, 2012


"On Facebook you're the product ..."

Hey, that sounds familiar.
posted by exogenous at 7:04 AM on March 26, 2012


Re: "Dislike" button, "Enemies"

It never fails to astound me how much adults will demand that the world make it easier for them to remain passive-aggressive and immature.
posted by Uther Bentrazor at 7:22 AM on March 26, 2012


Dislike button - but only for those who already installed the Firefox addon, sadly.
posted by IAmBroom at 7:43 AM on March 26, 2012


BBS software had both friends and enemies lists twenty years ago. And the latter was very helpful sometimes, since while reading a thread over a dial-up connection it was good to skip the text of people you didn't want to read.

Next, some other researcher will break new ground and add a warez section to Dropshare.
posted by fifteen schnitzengruben is my limit at 7:45 AM on March 26, 2012


NORMAL PEOPLE DON'T HAVE ENEMIES

Normal fucking people...
posted by Artw at 7:46 AM on March 26, 2012 [1 favorite]


If you have enemies in the classic sense that you need to defeat them, you're probably not spending a lot of time on Facebook.

There's about 100 million conservative christian republicans who really need to hear this message, then.
posted by elizardbits at 7:57 AM on March 26, 2012 [2 favorites]


OMG AND WE ARE FRIENDS ON SOCIAL NETWORKS!

posted by jaduncan


Uh, that's right, er, Jason? Are you still doing that... thing? You know.
posted by Zarkonnen at 7:59 AM on March 26, 2012


It never fails to astound me how much adults will demand that the world make it easier for them to remain passive-aggressive and immature.
posted by Uther Bentrazor at 3:22 PM on March 26


Precisely why I'd never use the flagging feature. Yeah, I know, it's solely to draw the mods' attention to posts that won't go well (in a flagger's opinion). Of course it is. Not also an opportunity for site-sanctioned passive aggression at all. Perish the thought.
posted by Decani at 8:33 AM on March 26, 2012


That photograph is hilarious. I can totally see that guy saying to that poor graduate student, "Listen to this. What if Facebook had ... an Enemies list?"

(Grad student struggles valiantly to keep his eyes from rolling.)

"You could do that, right? Just ... App something up for me. You get it ready, I'll contact the media."
posted by straight at 8:52 AM on March 26, 2012 [1 favorite]


Or as he says it himself, "When I saw the first friends list at the beginning of the social media era the first thing I thought was “where’s the enemies list?”

That poor grad student.
posted by straight at 8:54 AM on March 26, 2012


Not also an opportunity for site-sanctioned passive aggression at all. Perish the thought.

Wait, I don't think—no, it doesn't work that way, because flags aren't visible to other users. So you don't know when someone's flagged a comment you've made. The whole point of passive aggression is expressing your displeasure to someone in a way that they will notice, but that you can plausibly deny. Except flags on MetaFilter don't function as an expressive medium, because other users can't see them.

So I see your point, and while I guess w/r/t this thread it only glancingly germane, I don't think your characterization of flagging's goals or actual usage is entirely fair.

Also, in general, I find efforts to frame abrasive behavior as some kind of higher calling or moral imperative to be pretty suspect.
posted by pts at 9:25 AM on March 26, 2012


To everybody who is surprised at the asking of a "Dislike" button: YouTube actually has that feature. It wouldn't be a far stretch to put it into Facebook, people leave nasty comments on posts all the time, what's the difference?

What I want on Facebook is a feature allowing to play some of the cool games without automatically sharing all my pictures with said app, that would be sweet!
posted by Vindaloo at 9:53 AM on March 26, 2012


conservative christian republicans

WTF is it with apparently normal people that they maintain social media relationships with conservative christian republicans from whatever shithole, and act like it matters a crap? I see this all the time. You moved away from that place to get away from people like that, if they are not directly a member of your family why are you bothering with this shit?
posted by Artw at 10:06 AM on March 26, 2012 [2 favorites]


Yeah, I know, it's solely to draw the mods' attention to posts that won't go well

What? No, it's not. They're also for borked links and double comments and fantastic comments. I use those flags far more than the "hey this sux make it go away plz" options.
posted by rtha at 11:06 AM on March 26, 2012


This would be better as "Arch-enemies".
posted by mr_crash_davis at 11:08 AM on March 26, 2012


It allows you to have one. but only one.
posted by dunkadunc at 11:10 AM on March 26, 2012 [1 favorite]


WTF is it with apparently normal people that they maintain social media relationships with conservative christian republicans from whatever shithole, and act like it matters a crap?

Hate the sin, love the sinner.

Alternatively, just because you got out of a shithole doesn't mean you don't have some fondness for it.
posted by madcaptenor at 11:33 AM on March 26, 2012


Heelbook.
posted by Foosnark at 12:22 PM on March 26, 2012 [2 favorites]


Hey buddy; NORMAL PEOPLEs DON'T HAVE ENEMIES. They have people they dislike, or even loathe, but the whole public enemy thing is best served for rappers and comic book writers.
Normality begs to differ.
posted by IronLizard at 4:16 AM on March 27, 2012


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