The Pecking Order

16 04 2009

The best way to get yourself down is to pay close attention to what people say . Chances are, there is much more negative feedback going around than positive one. And those mirrors, too…

On the bright side of life, there are things to get you down even without listening to people – yes, the lovely (a-)social networks. One of the most deviously insiduous tools to this end is the Facebook social comparisons. Day in and day out you get updates of ranking changes which perfectly reflect your personality and it tumultous dynamics.

Yesterday you happen to be most kissable, today you are the worst person to get stuck on a desert island with. You are the most dateable, yet nobody would like to hang out with you for the day and take you for dinner. Examples are, fortunately, entirely fictitious – the author, to his own great surprise, never managed to climb the pecking order that high. What he got today (apart from the strange habit to refer to himself in third person, singular) was the new daily exhilaration:

Changes in your ranks:
#5 funniest (gained 12 places)
#23 person with the best sense of humor (lost 6 places)

Hmm, it seems that people laugh without thinking he has a sense of humor. Interestingly, two measures of the same thing go in entirely opposite directions! Why so? Because ranks are calculated on the basis of a bunch of weird people from your networks who press a (mostly random) picture when asked a stupid question. This is then summed up with the help of (a probably erroneous) algorithm and withouth any sort of mental engagement – published as your rank.

Should we trust it? Of course!! I mean, it IS Facebook, for Christ sake! If we didn’t have it, we would have to find our own way of creating the pecking order.




One response

19 04 2009

Long live the Algorithm, for if it dies, we die.

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