9 people you should really delete from Facebook
We've all got them.
That friendship you haven't expelled an ounce of social effort to maintain other than hitting 'Accept' on Facebook in a truly awkward moment of "Well, it would be more hassle to reject it." A relationship better described as 'fleeting acknowledgement of a fellow human being' than 'friend'.
A nod across a crowded website. A number on a social network. A link of data.
But you've not deleted them, have you? No. That would be rude. Worse still, it would detract from what you actually use Facebook for: a venue in which to indulge in the art of digital people watching.
These are the 9 characters you should almost certainly have removed from your life, yet still haven't.
1. That one who keeps posting inspiring quotes – when they’re actually very angry
Inevitably works in a job with limited horizons and fails to display any of the motivational qualities their pseudo-philosophical posts harp on about.
Often given to mentioning how their "enemies" will only make them stronger, and that they've gained clarity on "who their real friends are", when you know what they're actually referring to a drunken spat in the local last Friday that had none of the theatrical weight they're giving it.
Annoyance rating: You're only maintaining this one just to show other people in the office - 8/10
2. The one who always posts about a club night they’re launching
"8 October - HUGE HEADLINE ACTS"
No they aren't, Gavin. They're two bands you know from uni, one of which got played on Radio 1 at 3am last year.
"EARLY BIRD TICKETS NOW ON SALE"
People are only going to pay on the door, aren't they Gavin?
"NEARLY SOLD OUT"
No they aren't Gavin.
"CONFIRMED - CHUCKLE BROTHERS"
Tell me more...
Annoyance factor: Maybe, when you've got a quiet weekend, you'll actually go to one of these. Probably not, but maybe - 4/10
3. The mate who had a baby and won’t stop talking about it
We're not monsters - the arrival of new life is worth celebrating. "This is little Dom!", 149 likes, that kind of thing.
However, ever since Dom arrived on the scene, your friend's Facebook profile has become little more than a loudspeaker attached to the life of their child. It's like The Truman Show, but desperately awful.
"Look at Dom sleeping! Isn't he so cute?!"
"Look at Dom's new toy! He loves it!"
"Another brilliant day at the park with Dom!"
The truth is, you miss the relationship you had with your friend before Dom arrived. You would hit 'Delete' or 'Mute', but deep down, you're hoping your old buddy resurfaces from this parental gush and re-establishes themselves as a functional adult soon - one you can go to the pub with and talk to without mention of Dom's latest bowl movements.
Annoyance rating: Just accept that they've changed forever and move on - 9/10
4. The one who likes really old photos
Chris Peters reacted to a photo. "Ha! Fun times!"
Ha, you're right there Chris. But that's a photo of a school trip from 2001.
Chris, this photo didn't even come up as a "Memory" that Facebook wanted to share with you, did it? You've just been digging through my old photos. Why are you going through my old photos? You could have messaged and been all like "Hey! Long time no see, what's new with you?" but no, you've engaged in this oddly passive, stalker-like activity of liking old photos.
You're weird, Chris. Stop it.
Annoyance rating: He'll probably go away for another eight years only to resurface in 2023 with a comment on an old five-a-side photo, "Great game!" - 4/10
5. The one who posts about world politics and proceeds to have a nonsensical debate in the comments
"The problem with this world is..."
You've never read beyond that opening gambit, have you?
Others do, getting sucked into Dave's warped political vortex, in which no one else can ever be right. Dave just wants to fight you. He's angry with everything and thinks he knows how to fix it.
Dave is something of an idiot.
Annoyance rating: One of the worst offenders, but you can’t pry your eyes away from the screen, so you've still not unfriended him - 9/10
6. The girl who always posts the weird news stories
You still move in the same social circles as Olivia. In real life she's a nice girl - grounded, sensible, articulate.
A quick wander through her Facebook feed paints an entirely different picture of her: 'monster cyst' news stories, videos of in-growing hairs being removed, the occasional video of free running stunts gone wrong.
You're never sure if you should bring it up in person, for fear of what might lurk beneath her 'normal' public persona. Is Olivia okay? Is it all a bit of a cry for help? Does she need to talk.
No. She's fine. She just loves watching stuff with "puss" in the headline. She's a monster.
Annoyance rating: You could mute her posts, but once in a while she'll post something that's genuinely interesting - 5/10
7. The one who might come in useful for a job
Nice bloke, Craig. Sort of guy who might buy you a drink if you bumped into him a bar, realising before you'd reached the end of the glass that you actually have very little in common, which is why you've never attempted to talk to him since the wedding of a mutual friend back in 2011.
But you're not going to delete Craig. No sir. Not while he's still working for that company you'd fancy a job with.
Sure, Craig doesn't work in a relevant department - but you're not going to let go of the hope that he might be able to "Put a good word in" if a job opens up...
Annoyance rating: If anything, you're probably the annoying one in this relationship - 1/10
8. That guy who doesn’t understand grammar
Are. Your. Their. Whole.
Just some of the words that Dan doesn't have a full grasp of.
You don't want to patronise Dan though. Dan didn't really take to the education system - bad parenting, always in detention, punched a teacher once. He wasn't a bright kid, so you're not going to act like a long-range spell checker and correct his numerous status updates.
But you are going to take the opportunity to read through the numerous comments from others that point out his errors. Clearly they aren't burdened by a similar level of sympathy. Good on them.
Annoyance rating: Your going 2 flip soona or later - 6/10
9. The vegan friend
Used to love a good spaghetti bolognaise, but then they watched Cowspiracy ("The greatest documentary ever made") and everything went grade nine mental.
Subscribes to Google News alerts about PETA stories. Seems to spend every other weekend at vegan protests, covered in ketchup blood, or on a holistic retreat. Has an Instagram account that centres on their latest favourite yoga positions and images of sad cows.
You once posted them an article on Dubai’s best butchers and they went into a 12-paragraph rant. You replied with a picture of a Big Mac. It got pretty childish.
Annoyance rating: Every now and then they post a solid guacamole recipe, but you're not sure it's worth maintaining the relationship - 7/10