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In Mark Zuckerberg’s never ending quest for world domination, you can’t deny he’s made a few missteps. He’s redesigned the Facebook interface more times than Michael Jackson rearranged his face. Timeline is the ultimate “make-you-feel-old-as-shit” tool, and the privacy settings change every three weeks seemingly just to confuse Facebook users. Last week I think I accidentally gave some guy in Cincinnati permission to watch me shower.
Now in a move that will make the lurking stalkers of the world leap for joy, Facebook has quietly unveiled its new feature known as “Friendshake.”
The concept is as simple as it is sketchy. Anytime you’re out and about you can now visit the Friendshake page on your mobile device. The page will show you anyone nearby who is also visiting the Friendshake homepage, and invite you to add them as a friend.
Seems like an intelligent idea on paper, but let’s take a step back and look at the implications. First of all, as anyone who watches “To Catch a Predator” knows, it’s pretty damn easy to make a fake Facebook page. Nothing is stopping your average Chester from parking in an elementary school lot, visiting the page, and gaining access to an endless stream of photos and information.
Let’s think of another scenario: You’re out at the bar having a run-of-the-mill inebriated night of bliss. You meet a smoking hot blonde, chat her up, but in your drunken idiocy you forget to ask for her number. You decide the only solution is the Friendshake feature, and you visit the site with an eager optimism. Then it happens. Suddenly you’re being flooded with friend requests, and the strangest thing? They’re all fat girls. Your “friend request” list begins to look a lot like “Farmville.” So what happened? Easy, the bar next door was having a lady’s night that included free queso and by visiting the page you subjected yourself to the will of the entire herd.
Extreme and unrealistic situations? Perhaps, but that doesn’t mean this feature isn’t creepy. While in theory it sounds like a great idea, I’m sure it’s only a matter of time before this technology gets exploited by the pedophiles, stalkers, and other groups we have no interest in associating with.
- [image via Gizmodo]