Facebook Take a Break Feature puts friendships on Life Support

It's not okay if we agree to disagree on this one

It’s not okay if we agree to disagree on this one

The other night a friend from my College Years posted something on Facebook that could be perceived as racist, if read in a certain light.  Specifically, any light bright enough to read her status post in.

It would be easy to unfriend her and not look back.  In fact, since I am trying to trim down my Facebook friends list, I may one day unfriend her completely.  But for the moment, I decided to use the Take a Break feature instead.

Facebook has a “new” feature called Take a Break.  As far as I can tell this is a more nuanced setting than simply hiding someone and obviously less severe than unfriending or blocking them.  It also appears to be meant for people who were in more intimate relationships that have now cooled but not completely diminished.

In the early years, Facebook had a little known setting called See less of/See More of.   It wasn’t easy to find and I don’t know if many people used it.  The setting has long since been deprecated but I suspect that if you implemented it, the affects are still in use.

The HIDE feature hides the person in question from your feed, but I suspect it also hides you from theirs.  This could be an unintended tell that you hide them when they suddenly stop seeing your cat video posts.

The Take A Break feature lets you chose if you want the “break” to be mutual or one sided.  Apparently you can hide your feed from them, but still see their posts; or vice versa.  I call this last one the narcissistic option.

This is the part where I justify not unfriending my little racist friend.  I really don’t have a good reason other than nostalgia or loyalty for keeping her around.  While I have not talked to this person IRL in decades, I am fond of the time we spent together in a sleepy little backwater college town.  I don’t think she realizes her racism overprivilege and I like to think that by staying connected to her, somehow I may influence her to reevaluate her outlook at social issues and inequality in America.  Now who’s being narcissistic.

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