Despite my contemplative look at the debasement of the word and concept of friend, the reality is this: I’m still going to use the word. I’m still going to describe as friends the people who I make connections with in a wide variety of ways. I’ll continue to say “business-friend” or “blogging-friend” or “Nashville-friend” or “Twitter-friend,” but the word friend is firmly entrenched in my vocabulary. When I don’t use such adjectives, it’s a clue that I may consider that person more than a hyphenated friend. If I don’t hyphenate you and you feel that’s stepping over the bounds, sorry. If you want to call me a friend, please do, I need all the friends I can get. However, if I don’t know you, I may not friend you on Facebook. However, my definition of know is fairly broad. If your remind me how I know you, it helps. Also, if you’re a Nashville or media/tech-blogger or you’re someone I know through an industry-connection, then, in a Facebookian way, I’m pretty sure we’re friendable.
And while I’m at it, let me publicly give-up on another debased, unfortunate word: content. I don’t generate content, I write words or take photographs or shoot video. However, as certain powers-that-be (translation: people who write checks) seem hellbent on jamming all forms of human expression into one jar called “content,” then, hey, whatever. I’ve been writing some copy for the soon-to-be-relaunched Hammock.com website and it has the word content all over it. We’ve even thrown-in a few “user-generated-content” phrases to clarify what I mean when I say that people engage in conversations and personal expression.
Just think of me as your user-generated-content-friend.
Bonus: Back in February, I blogged about friendstitution, the practice of “renting” MySpace friends lists.