Posted by: Dan | November 28, 2011

An Aside…

The other day an old friend — a former roommate and colleague, and one of the few women in the world I would agree to walk with in the alleys of Vancouver’s downtown eastside at one in the morning — was visiting and discovered that I have a very small, “secret” facebook account.  She was appalled that I had not “friended” her online, and took this to mean that we were not actually “real” friends — despite the fact that we do things like actually hang-out in person, or talk about pretty much everything  from our sex lives to our most private struggles.  We’ve had each others’ backs a number of times in a number of situations (including two where people were at risk of dying imminently), but what really mattered to her was that we were not “friends” on facebook — i.e. within an online community wherein personal brand images relate to other personal brand images (i.e. Second Life by another name).

Sure gives substance to Baudrillard’s claims about the triumph of the simulacrum (or Zizek’s remarks about the rise of the internet as the rise of a new form of gnostic disembodiment).



  1. That is a humorous claim by Zizek and gets at something true. Where is it from?

    • Hi William,

      Z. makes that claim on a number of occasions but I think I first came across it in “On Belief.”

  2. Now I’ve got the sh*ts too !!!!!

    More seriously, it might be interesting to explore what your friend was saying with that…

    I’m commenting on your piece by the way. Thing is you’re saying so much that it’d take a fortnight commenting properly, and I never get around to finishing.

  3. i’m also appalled that we are not facebook friends. jerk.

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