General Etiquette > Techno-quette

Would this upset you?

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For some reason, SIL and FIL have decided FB status updates are how they should inform other family about big news. It's how we found out FIL had cancer, when FIL was hospitalized  months later (for an unrelated reason), when SIL got pregnant, when SIL got married (we didn't even find out until a month later), and now that SIL has just had her baby. We never get a phone call, email, or even a text message. DH usually calls them after he sees the news on FB, usually saying something like "So, I see you mentioned [important news] on FB...what's going on with that?"

Since the most recent news announcement, I've pretty much decided that if we aren't worth a phone call or anything for important news in the family, they shouldn't expect us to care. Not a direct cut, but more more of a mutual indifference. Is this petty?

If another family member asks us why we have not reacted to the news in some way (like sending a card, buying a gift, etc.) what should we say?

I hate that! I don't check facebook that often and I usually only see the first page so if you post something important chances are good that I am not going to see it. I haven't had someone only use facebook to announce important events but I would have the same reaction. If someone asks I would just say I didn't see that post.

I'd say "Well, I didn't know it happened. Did you leave me a message I didn't get?" and play dumb.

In our family, we do talk a LOT about stuff on Facebook. However, when there are issues of importance, we still call each other! I mean, I called to tell mom and sister and grandparents when DP went into the hospital. I updated the whole time she was there on Facebook for expediency, but I did the initial notifications by phone.

It would bother me, but it would only upset me if they still call each other for big news and just neglect to tell you.  I have an aunt and uncle who do this.  It drives me nuts, but they treat the whole family this way, so I don't take it personally. 

If I were you, I wouldn't bother trying to change them nor would I "pretend" that I didn't find out about the news.  However, if you feel too hurt to call them to talk about whatever it it that was posted, I don't see anything wrong with just writing "Congratulations!" or "So sorry to hear that.  Give me a call if you need anything" and leaving the phone call part up to them. 

Mental Magpie:
I'd pretend like I never saw the post, plausible deniability and all.  When/if they ask why I never called/reacted/cared, I'd tell them that if they want me to know something/care, they need to tell me directly.  I think you're spot on with the mutual indifference.  If they can't be bothered to tell me, I won't go out of my way to show I care.  Once they tell me directly, however, I will react appropriately.


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