I am always confounded by Facebook. The social service is always changing things behind the scenes. Nothing I look for a second time is ever found in the same place. I wonder if that’s done by design or sheer arrogance?
My latest confoundidery happened last week when I discovered, for some reason, I had over 5,505 friends! You can see in today’s screenshot of my Facebook page that number has dipped to 5,501 — I lose and gain friends all day long in bunches of threes and fours for reasons I have not yet been able to divine — and I have no idea how I was able to leap over the infamous and mean Facebook 5,000 friend barrier because I haven’t actively made any friends requests in over a year.
I don’t want to ask Facebook what’s happening for fear they’ll somehow delete the friends I already have. For a moment, I thought Facebook had finally relented and decided to allow us to befriend anyone we felt like befriending without enforcing their artificial 5,000 limit on the amount of friends they think we should have.
Then, yesterday, I saw I had three new friend requests! I love seeing new friend requests — because I will be friends with anyone who asks — but when I clicked to confirm the pending friend requests, I was given this old, anarchical, Facebook friend block:
I guess I was wrong. Facebook had not increased their friends limits. I was unable to add the friends to my network. I never delete friends, so I’m not going to get rid of one person to make room for another.
How did those three friend requests sneak by the Facebook friend limiter on their end when, for over a week, I’ve been above the 5,000 friend limit by at least 500 friends? Those requests to be my friend should have ignited an error message on the requester end saying something un-friendly like — “This person has too many friends!” — and the request would not appear in my friend inbox.
I also don’t understand how liking Pages counts against my friends limit. I used to like about 20 Pages, but I think I’ve pared that down to about three now — and even if I go to zero liked Pages, I’ve never been able to add more friends by unliking something. Why are liked Pages and friends considered the same thing by Facebook?
I’m not sure why I have so many friends. The only thing I can think of is that I had a lot of old friend requests that I made a long time ago when I was way below the 5,000 friend limit and those requests are finally being accepted, or being processed from an old server queue, and showing up in the requested friendship inboxes of others.
I’m thrilled to have over 5,500 Facebook friends, and I hope our Facebook overlords will allow more friends to be added — even if it doesn’t currently make any allowable sense.