Operations >> Browse Articles >> Technology >> Social Media


Why Can't We Be Friends?

Why Can't We Be Friends?

Lance Haun | Rehaul

I’m a friendly guy.

When you come to Portland, I’m there. We can grab a McMenamins beer and chat about talent whenever it suits you.

When you e-mail me, I usually respond within a few days if your request isn’t out of the ordinary.

If you call, I pick up unless I’m on another call or I’m in my writing zone or it is 4am.

But if you are a stranger to me and you friend me on Facebook, that ain’t happening. And I’ve tried to be helpful to the people who have messaged me to say it’s rude to not accept a friend request on Facebook or follow back on Twitter but I think where I stand on this issue might be useful to others in the same boat.


If we’ve met in person or we’ve conversed extensively online, Facebook may work out for us. Otherwise, it isn’t.

Look, I go onto Facebook to chat with my buddies, see videos of my nephew and find out what Laurie has dressed her cats up as this time (can’t wait for Halloween). I run ERE’s Facebook pages but I interact entirely on those. I have my own Facebook page too. Most of my friends aren’t in the industry though. They are family, friends and former classmates. I very rarely post pertinent updates about HR.

Seeing pictures from people I don’t know sucks. I love my in-laws but their old vacation photos aren’t terribly interesting to me either. Having a bunch of people on Facebook I don’t know crowds out the people I do know and want to keep up with. And I don’t want to put on fifteen different filters to keep it sorted.


Twitter is my information and conversation line. For information, I follow a group of people I personally find useful. I follow hashtags. I follow conversations around ERE Media’s publications. I follow a few lists. So it may look like I only follow 400 or so people but in the end, it is several thousand.

The great thing about Twitter is that someone doesn’t have to follow you in order to have a conversation. And people have access to what I want to share without there being a mutual connection. I’ve had conversations with hundreds of people not on my follow list because we were following the same issue or perhaps have a mutual friend.

And when I go on the road, having a smaller (but focused) groups of similar sharing folks to follow helps me stay in the loop without overwhelming.

Next: LinkedIn >>