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Everyone's Stalking You on Facebook

By Dustin Rowles | Miscellaneous | April 29, 2010 |

By Dustin Rowles | Miscellaneous | April 29, 2010 |

A colleague of mine who studies social networks for a living told me the other day that the activity that accounts for the single highest number of page views on Facebook is men looking at women’s pictures. It’s an interesting note (and maybe a little creepy for some women), and I wonder, actually, how much time people spend on Facebook stalking one another, so to speak. I mean: In a way, anyone who posts pictures, personal information, and the like are putting themselves out there. So, I guess you should be aware that a lot of your friends are probably checking you out.

In related news, a recent study that Forbes did on Social Networking (via Jezebel) basically concluded that women dominate sites like Facebook, and Twitter, where it’s all about chatting and socializing, while men dominate sites like Linked In, Digg, and YouTube, where it’s less social and more content and status oriented.

Women don’t just visit different sites from men, they use social media differently than men. Experts believe the difference between how men and women operate online mirror their motivations offline. While women often use online social networking tools to make connections and share items from their personal lives, men use them as means to gather information and increase their status.
“We’re women—we like to talk about things. Women use social media as a way to connect,” says Jodi Kahn, the head of iVillage.

I guess I’ve always wondered, considering the decent size of our readership, why we didn’t have any sort of following on Digg or Reddit (not that I’ve tried to create one), but it makes sense in light of the fact that Pajiba is still a female-dominated site. It also allows me to understand why our news posts aren’t usually as popular as the conversational posts (or Pajiba Love). Folks around here, it seems, are less interested in the news as you are in commenting on it. We’re working on balancing that.

Speaking of Facebook, there’s been quite an uproar over the last week about the site’s privacy policy and how it’s been taking your privacy rights away by, among other things, sharing your personal information with third party sites. Now, even Congress is getting involved, though I guess I’m a little confused about what the big fuss is about. I think if you put something online, and especially if it’s available for some people to see, you’re kind of giving up your rights to complain about privacy. In other words, if you put nudie photos of yourself on Facebook, don’t expect a really high level of privacy.

Finally, I’ve been complaining about John Cusack’s Tweets both here and over on Twitter for weeks now — I’m a little chagrined at just how dumb and reactionary Cusack is (the same criticism applies to Adam Baldwin). What’s perturbed me the most about Cusack’s tweets is his terrible spelling and grammar. Seems the NYTimes found that to be a fascinating topic, as well, and posted a fun article about the grammar police over on Twitter who basically spend countless hours pointing out people’s spelling and grammar mistakes. Cusack has been a huge target for them. I know there’s a lot of you who can get behind that. For those grammar Nazis who don’t get enough of a work-out here, you can always join Twitter and exercise your grammar superiority over millions.

If you do, be sure to follow us on Twitter. And if you’re not already, give us a Thumbs Up over on Facebook, too.

Dustin is the founder and co-owner of Pajiba. You may email him here, follow him on Twitter, or listen to his weekly TV podcast, Podjiba.

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