I have a question that has been bothering me. I’ve noticed a trend on Facebook in regards to invitations to events (specifically children’s birthday parties.). I had a friend who created an event for her son’s 9th or 10th birthday. I’ve never met her child so I did not expect an invitation. However for weeks up to the big day she would post on her wall updates like, “I need to know exactly who is coming to Tommy’s birthday party on August 20th. I need a head count for treat bags and to make sure we have enough food”. I cringed because I knew that people who were not invited were going to see this. Sure enough a few people started leaving comments saying they’d love to come IF they had been invited to which my friend replied if they were invited they would have gotten an event notification. They didn’t get an event notification. And boy were they offended. I privately messaged her and mentioned that she can send a mail to everyone invited as a mass mailer through the events menu. I do this all the time for mine. She replied back that it’s easier to just make a post on her wall.
Has it become acceptable to do stuff like this? I know that it’s rude to discuss a party people aren’t invited to when talking among friends in a group setting, but does the same hold up for social media? I’ve seen the same done for showers and holiday parties. When I’m invited I can usually see the guest list and sometimes there are over 100+ people invited. I know the hosts/hostesses and there is absolutely no way they could host that many people. What would they do if the majority of potential guests accepted? You can’t take back the invitation can you? Do the rules for face to face interactions apply to places like Facebook and Twitter? 0926-13
Acceptable and ubiquitous are two separate definitions. What may become commonplace in a culture may still not be acceptable.
What people often are guilty of is thoughtlessness. They do not think ahead and conceptualize the consequences of actions they take. So they post foolish content on Twitter or Facebook with little to no thought as to how the message will appear to others. I had a friend post a Facebook status that said, “Partied with 50 of my closest friends this weekend!”, with no thought as to how that would appear to the 100+ other friends who had not been invited. There were people who discovered that the depth of relationship they thought they had with her was not what they thought it was. She did not intend to be hurtful but in being thoughtless, she inadvertently damaged some good relationships.
Your friend isn’t just thoughtless, she’s lazy. She knows there is a better way to communicate with her guests and she chose to ignore your good advice. She’s begging and haranguing them publicly to RSVP to her party which is certain to backfire on her. It really is not a good idea to bully people into accepting invitations because those guests are just as likely to not show up at all at the appointed party time.