Facebook is no longer in a relationship: Jeff Groat likes this

Facebook and your private life. Peanut butter and jelly, or oil and water?

This is Jeff Groat. He’s the Runner’s sex columnist. He has only one qualification for the job: his last name sounds like a dirty word. That’s good enough for us.

By Jeff Groat [Entertainment Bureau Chief]

You may not know it, but I’m a pretty private person when it comes to my personal life. I’m not the type of person to gush about crushes or talk about feelings. Whatever those are.

So I find it distressing when I’m able to read all about the personal goings-on, the inner workings of the relationships of all my Facebook “friends.”

I say “friends” because I’m mostly interested in creeping their pages for drunken duck-lips photos and any posts of information that let the voice in my head think I “really” know them. Yeah, I’m that guy.

But let’s do a little soul searching here. I am at a loss when people, young and old, seem to think that Facebook comes with this golden seal of privacy, that anything posted online is yours and 304 other people’s business only. That idea is seriously flawed to begin with. It comes with the baggage that anything posted is somehow so important that 304 people must know within two minutes of logging on to their account.

Ranting aside, it’s becoming known that Facebook, for all its social networking glory, is actually contributing to relationship woes. A study published by Mashable.com proves it. The study was done by the University of Guelph, and originally published in the CyberPsychology & Behaviour Journal. It found that in the group of college students studied there was an overt link between Facebook use and jealousy in relationships.

Just having access to information led to an increase of jealousy among 19.1 per cent of students. Plus, 10.3 per cent of people couldn’t keep themselves from creeping their significant other’s page.

All this should do is confirm that Facebook is mostly just a giant time-suck. Sure, it has its strengths and its legitimate uses, but it sure doesn’t mix well with relationships. I say, if someone can use a tiny thumbs-up icon to voice their opinion of your new status, it has been cheapened just a bit.