Author Topic: Publicizing a quiet(ish) un-friending. I should stay out of it, right?  (Read 4100 times)

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CluelessBride

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All of the following names are made up.

Background:
I'm facebook friends with John. We went to college together, and have since seen each other at reunions etc. We were never close, but get along well enough. I am a casual acquaintance of Susan, who also went to college with us, but am not actually facebook friends with her.

John recently posted an article on his facebook wall which sparked a debate with Susan. After a heated back and forth, Susan added several points to her argument and invited John to unfriend her. John addresses her points but did not unfriend her. The back and forth continued. Finally, Susan posts that she feels like John is trying to intimidate her into agreeing with him and basically says shes done.

John then starts a separate post stating that Susan unfriended him over the argument on his wall and that he doesn't understand why. He asks if anyone can take a look at the conversation and explain it, adding that he may try to follow up with Susan via email in a few days, but is afraid that she might take it as harassment.

In reply, most people are offering John support, saying that they didn't see any of John's arguments as offensive or overly aggressive, and some even adding that Susan had previously unfriended them over similar disagreements.

I don't want to get involved in this argument. However, I feel a little awkward about John publicizing that Susan unfriended him. Especially when they have a lot of mutual friends/acquaintances. My inclination is to stay quiet and stay out of it. There is however a small, nagging part of me that wants to email Susan and give her a heads up. Because if I unfriended someone and they started making it into a Thing, I'd like to know. But at the same time, I can't think of anything productive I would do with that knowledge. So tell me, ehell, is my first inclination correct? Ignore the drama and stay out of it?


In case it's relevant (although I don't think it is): I happen to agree with John's position, but I think that the article he presented was a horrible example and that Susan's criticisms of the article were reasonable and legitimate. In terms of the actual argument Susan started off very snarky and John responded in kind. But then the argument quickly transitioned to more of a debate than a snark fest, until Susan's final "goodbye cruel thread" post.

Sheila Take a Bow

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Re: Publicizing a quiet(ish) un-friending. I should stay out of it, right?
« Reply #1 on: January 28, 2013, 01:44:06 AM »
Stay out of it. I've seen a very similar situation on Facebook and it only makes it worse when people start getting involved and reporting what's been said behind someone else's back.

CrochetFanatic

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Re: Publicizing a quiet(ish) un-friending. I should stay out of it, right?
« Reply #2 on: January 28, 2013, 01:46:53 AM »
Oh yes.  Definitely stay out of it.  And be evasive if he asks you for your opinion, "I wasn't involved, and I'd like to keep it that way", or something similar.

Ceallach

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Re: Publicizing a quiet(ish) un-friending. I should stay out of it, right?
« Reply #3 on: January 28, 2013, 04:41:51 AM »
Stay out of it - all your intervention will achieve is to further upset Susan, plus make you look like a busybody for getting involved. Essentially you'd be fueling the drama.

Also if John and Susan still have mutual FB friends it is actually possible that she can see or is aware of the situation despite defriending him. You are not close enough to this situation to get involved or gauge it accurately.
"Nobody can do everything, but everybody can do something"


Lynnv

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Re: Publicizing a quiet(ish) un-friending. I should stay out of it, right?
« Reply #4 on: January 28, 2013, 11:19:43 AM »
Your instincts are, IMO, correct.  Stay out of it.  And normally I would agree that it was bad of John to advertise the unfriending-but in this case Susan started this part of the fight by making that public when she invited him to unfriend her.  If Susan hadn't done that, I would still stay out of it-but would be more torn.  But, in this case, she started this particular part of the drama by talking about unfriending on his wall in the first place.

Either way, in this case, staying out of it is the right thing to do. 
Lynn

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peaches

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Re: Publicizing a quiet(ish) un-friending. I should stay out of it, right?
« Reply #5 on: January 28, 2013, 11:30:07 AM »
 
I don't want to get involved in this argument.

I agree with the sentiment above. Don't get involved in this.

About unfriending, when you unfriend someone on Facebook, it's because you don't want to hear from them, or about them, anymore. At least, that's the assumption I make.


Winterlight

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Re: Publicizing a quiet(ish) un-friending. I should stay out of it, right?
« Reply #6 on: January 28, 2013, 11:47:27 AM »
I'd stay out of it. Neither of them is "right" here- Susan for telling him to unfriend her instead of quietly doing it, John for dragging others into it.
If wisdom’s ways you wisely seek,
Five things observe with care,
To whom you speak,
Of whom you speak,
And how, and when, and where.
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Auntie Mame

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Re: Publicizing a quiet(ish) un-friending. I should stay out of it, right?
« Reply #7 on: January 28, 2013, 11:51:37 AM »
Oh boy!  Stay with your first gut reactiom.  Ignore this situation and pretend and it never ever happened.

And wow, it always shocks me when hear about supposed adults pulling stuff like this.   :o
Auntie needs fuel, black coffee and a side car.

Sharnita

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Re: Publicizing a quiet(ish) un-friending. I should stay out of it, right?
« Reply #8 on: January 28, 2013, 12:24:53 PM »
If Susan posted a "goodby cruel thread" post and then defriended him, there are probably some people who would have figured it out, whether he mentioned it or not. 

CluelessBride

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Re: Publicizing a quiet(ish) un-friending. I should stay out of it, right?
« Reply #9 on: January 28, 2013, 12:59:25 PM »
Thanks for the reassurances, everyone!  I will definitely follow my original instinct and stay out of it.

About unfriending, when you unfriend someone on Facebook, it's because you don't want to hear from them, or about them, anymore. At least, that's the assumption I make.



This is a really good point, and it makes me feel much better.


The good news is, my only real relationship with John is through facebook and my only relationship with Susan is through friend's on facebook. So by not saying anything I am practically 100% guaranteed to stay out of the drama. And you all have helped me convince myself that doing nothing and staying out of it isn't a selfish course of action. But in fact a reasonable and wise course for all involved.

lilfox

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Re: Publicizing a quiet(ish) un-friending. I should stay out of it, right?
« Reply #10 on: January 28, 2013, 01:44:07 PM »
John is already getting the only responses he wants: validation that he was right and Susan was a jerk for unfriending him.  If he seriously wanted to "understand" what happened, he would have taken it offline and asked someone (maybe even Susan) in real life, instead of publicizing her reaction and his thoughts of emailing her to his personal audience.

You are wise to ignore the drama.

girlysprite

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Re: Publicizing a quiet(ish) un-friending. I should stay out of it, right?
« Reply #11 on: February 06, 2013, 10:00:56 AM »
John is already getting the only responses he wants: validation that he was right and Susan was a jerk for unfriending him.  If he seriously wanted to "understand" what happened, he would have taken it offline and asked someone (maybe even Susan) in real life, instead of publicizing her reaction and his thoughts of emailing her to his personal audience.

You are wise to ignore the drama.

What she said.

Bottlecaps

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Re: Publicizing a quiet(ish) un-friending. I should stay out of it, right?
« Reply #12 on: February 08, 2013, 05:51:43 PM »
John is already getting the only responses he wants: validation that he was right and Susan was a jerk for unfriending him.  If he seriously wanted to "understand" what happened, he would have taken it offline and asked someone (maybe even Susan) in real life, instead of publicizing her reaction and his thoughts of emailing her to his personal audience.

You are wise to ignore the drama.

This exactly. Do not feed the drama-llamas. :)
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JenJay

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Re: Publicizing a quiet(ish) un-friending. I should stay out of it, right?
« Reply #13 on: February 08, 2013, 06:55:55 PM »
John is already getting the only responses he wants: validation that he was right and Susan was a jerk for unfriending him.  If he seriously wanted to "understand" what happened, he would have taken it offline and asked someone (maybe even Susan) in real life, instead of publicizing her reaction and his thoughts of emailing her to his personal audience.

You are wise to ignore the drama.

Exactly. The only thing you'd accomplish by drawing the unfriending to Susan's attention is to validate for her why she unfriended him to begin with, which she probably doesn't need.  ;)

oceanus

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Re: Publicizing a quiet(ish) un-friending. I should stay out of it, right?
« Reply #14 on: February 14, 2013, 12:33:35 PM »
Quote
So tell me, ehell, is my first inclination correct? Ignore the drama and stay out of it?

Yes, completely.