Unfriend – Word of the Year

As reported in multiple articles, including here, “unfriend” has been dubbed the 2009 Word of the Year by the New Oxford American Dictionary. This is interesting in the context of social networking, and what it really means to “friend” someone. One could mistakenly infer that friendship as defined by Facebook is the same as friendship as commonly and previously understood. But with the ability to unfriend with a click of an icon, perhaps the meaning of friendship is much more utilitarian on the internet. In the spirit of relevance, keeping your network current and “fresh”, unfriending is the appropriate pruning process which keeps the core of your social network true to whatever the owner’s objective may be – without unfriending, your social network becomes overburdened with baggage friends – friends (connections) which do not serve the current purpose. I hope being unfriended doesn’t hurt people’s feelings.

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