Wednesday, November 02, 2011

False friends

I checked Facebook this morning and noticed a co-worker I'll call X--someone I interact with only via email and IM--posted that she'd been laid off. I was shocked--there haven't been any rumors of layoffs.

I asked a another co-worker, someone who works with X directly, and he was dumbfounded. He spotted her on IM and asked what's up. She hasn't been laid off.

Our first thought was that her account had been hacked--there's certainly a lot of that going around. But then I looked at X's account and noticed that it said she lived in California. "Where does X live?" I asked my co-worker. "South Carolina," he replied.

Yes, I am "friends" with someone who has the same name as my co-worker but is in fact a complete stranger. Furthermore, I've been "friends" with this person since spring of 2010. She never posts about work--till now--so I didn't suspect anything was amiss.

And the kicker: I have another co-worker who's a mutual Facebook friend of this Fake X. I have no clue who friended whom first.

I'm pretty sure there's a lesson here about friends and the cybersphere, but I'll let you draw your own.

PS: I'm now friends with the right person. Hello, X!

UPDATE: So it turns out that the Facebook friend that Fake X and I have in common actually knows two people by the name of X. I'm guessing I saw the wrong one on my friend's wall, assumed it was the one I knew, and made a friend request. And for some reason, Fake X accepted.


Knatolee said...

That's pretty funny but I can see how easily it could happen. Glad you got your friends all straightened out.

Jim Donahue said...

I don't know about you, but I interact with maybe 10% of my Facebook friends on any sort of regular basis.

Professor Longnose said...

I think the more Facebook friends you have, the fewer actual friends you have.

Professor Longnose said...

Perhaps your coworker who knows two people by the name of X also knows two people by the name of Jim Donahue, and Fake X thought you were the other one.

Jim Donahue said...

Well, I am raising a clone army.