Formspring follies

Some would argue that there is no such thing as too much information. Those things that are taboo are only scandalous because of our cultural upbringing. The human body and all of its quirks are a work of art, we should not be afraid to hide our actions and our thoughts, we are all human and we should embrace this basic fact, etc.

Earlier today, my friend B ate at the Subway at the Cleveland Park stop in Washington DC. Her favorite color is black and she can swallow her own tongue. Also, she is a virgin and is thinking about trying shrooms.

You may be thinking “Awkward.” Reasonable questions include: What are you getting at? What the hell? Does B know what you’re writing about her? (Yes). Anonymous people that now have access to all of this information via Formspring ask: what kind of sandwich did you get at Subway? And also, would you ever consider a threesome?

Is this too much information? While my instincts and sense of logic say yes, I am way wrong and uninformed. And I thought that Farmville was perplexing.

Formspring is a website that allows you to make a profile that includes your name, a picture, and a box for people to ask you anonymous questions. The questions and answers are displayed on your profile below the box.

B has up-to-date answered a mere 62 questions. Anyone with Internet access is able to effortlessly learn that she consumed a veggie delite with extra banana peppers and yes, she would probably be up for a threesome, but the other two people involved have to be very attractive.  I asked B (anonymously) if she thought that Formspring was a bit creepy.  “I’m viewing this as a social experiment,” she responded.  I hope she’s learning a lot, or at least as much as future employers are.

Although Formspring has been taking some heat as of late (nothin’ much, just suicide potentially stemming from anonymous hazing) they report 50 million new users last month alone.

Just in case Formspring doesn’t adequately do the job of publicizing all of your information, Facebook applications like “Foursquare” allow you to update your GPS location as your status from your phone.  B says that this is clearly to help out in cases of kidnapping, because her 743 facebook friends will know exactly where she was last.  Aha, she says, isn’t it genius?

Foolishly, I asked if perhaps the combination of her poor privacy settings and the link to Mapquest her location actually make kidnapping and stalking easier.

B laughed heartily, shown by an extra four “ol”s at the end of the “lol” in her text.

Realizing my folly, I set about the business of setting up my own GPS-facebook status-system.

As a beginner, I decided to maintain my current privacy settings, although I hope to delete those in the near future.  Luckily I am kindred spirits with my triple digit facebook friends, and I know for a fact that none of them will ever use express knowledge of my location for nefarious purposes.

For example, none of my ex-boyfriends or divorced-out family members or ex-teammates from my csoccer team in the third grade would ever wish me anything but the best in life.

My roommate interrupts me.  “Kiley,” she says, “I think you are perhaps being a tad sarcastic.  Maybe you should not be online friends with people you do not know very well.”

I ignore her, because obviously if I discard important people such as my best friend in the second grade’s mother, they will know and be very upset with me.  Also, there are those people that you meet and think you will hang out with but don’t – what if you defriend them only to end up spending gratuitous amounts of time with them later? Awkwarddd.  You can only blame so many deleted friendships on random interweb fluctuations.

Unfortunately for me, my phone does not contain a GPS or Internet access, so my endeavor came to a quick ending.

If I am kidnapped, you will have to assume that I was last seen in Meadville, Pa.  Authorities may even have to rely on actual eyewitnesses.

If someone were to ask me my greatest fear on Formspring, I would say being kidnapped from an unknown location thanks to Formspring. Or perhaps David Bowie. Either way, life is rough.