Facebook couples’ pages are the social network’s newest unwanted update, using the data you’ve supplied it to compile a nonconsensual scrapbook of sorts regardless of whether you would be mortified beyond belief by such a happenstance.
The Facebook couples’ pages development is yet another reminder that regardless of what you tell Facebook, it reserves the right to deduce, compile, arrange and present your data in any way it pleases and supersede the way you choose to present yourself in public.
Facebook couples’ pages also present a new dilemma for folks that use the service but also desire personal control over the way their profiles are presented to others on the site. While those who have abstained from splashing the details of their most personal relationships across Facebook have in the past been accused of “hiding something,” Facebook couples’ pages present a compelling datapoint for keeping mum about your relationships in the public sphere.
(That isn’t even taking into account the comprehensive embarrassment we all must feel when a Facebook friend is sucker-punched romantically and forced to sport the broken heart of shame, or when couples fight through their relationship status, or any other permutation of social network oversharing where we feel as if we are stuck at a dinner table while the two hosts throw carrots at each other.)
Go ahead, if you’ve listed yourself as married, engaged, in a relationship with or in a civil partnership with someone, and navigate to Facebook.com/us. Therein you’ll find a page dedicated to you and your other half, with images, interactions and the date you two became involved.
Facebook couples’ pages are not only viewable to you, however — anyone who clicks on the status you’ve selected, be it married, engaged, or otherwise, can view the information included, perhaps with the exception of where privacy settings prohibit such display.
Reaction to Facebook couples’ pages has been nearly universally best described as “grossed out,” but it’s unlikely Facebook will roll back the decision to showcase your relationship to others regardless of your feelings on the matter.
If you want to disable your Facebook couples’ page, only one option thus far is known to do that — unlist your relationship. While this will probably make many Facebook users uncomfortable, you’re going to have to weigh the discomfort of abstaining from Facebook PDA against the discomfort of your co-workers and colleagues seeing all your culled Schmoopy statuses in one comprehensive and humiliating easy-to-access place.
Do you find the new Facebook couples pages to be a bit TMI for grown-ups?