The F Party

illustration of a police officer with an 'f' on his hat
F Police by DrAjao
Facebook’s DNA has changed. It started as a frat party that never ended and just kept growing until it was a complete festival (a la Burning Man) with sideshows, hippie communes, concession stands, people making out, people puking, pissing, pooping, using psychedelic drugs, rocking to music, drinking, eating good food, eating bad food...just generally having a good time in a way they know how and in the way they define ‘good’...
...but it still was a party. The party became very popular. More people flocked in. They came in with family and friends and left with strangers. Some didn’t even remember why they were there anymore. Some didn’t even remember who they were anymore… ...but it still was a party. More concession stands showed up. Generally, more people showed up to sell all sorts to the party goers. The organizers of the party charged them a token to set up their stalls, which were, by and large, ignored by the party goers…. ...I mean, seriously, we’re partying here.
Then all of a sudden, the frat boys grew up and party was bought out by shark investors hoping to make a good buck from this awesome party. Dude, this was a party where those who didn’t attend were basically committing political suicide! But it still was a party. The new management started to build. The vendors and partygoers alike were certain they were building stalls, soundstages, pedestals, pulpits, multi-tiered halls with ginormous viewing screens and badass sound... ...oh what a party. It turned out the management was building prisons. Okay maybe “prisons” is a harsh term...they were just containment cells for offenders...you know, the flashers, the streakers, the party poopers, and the scammers (replete with clichéd imagery of a silhouetted character with a hat and long coat filled with stolen goods). Yaaay right? So when stone-faced bespectacled policemen started patrolling the grounds people hardly took notice. Only problem was, the policemen were not scouting for the above mentioned people. They were scouting for anyone who was being the life the party or attempting to do so. If anyone held a mic or a top hat, the Po Po was on him like Right Twix on Left Twix. Scoping him out, taking copious notes, asking people here and there whether that guy cracking jokes (in the corner full of belly-ache-laughing people) was trying to upsell them something else. If they caught anyone giving away free candy without a permit, they hauled his ‘hind off to pris...er...containment cells.
man in top hat behind bars
Containment Cells by DrAjao

Yep...anyone who wanted to be the life of the party from then on had to pay for a permit. Management of course felt that the term “Containment Cells” was too negative so they tried to put a positive spin on things. They claimed that they were merely temporarily detaining those whose selling tactics were getting out of control so they don’t distract too much from the party. So they called the cells “Controlment Cells”. Before long, people couldn’t easily party with their friends any more. As if it wasn’t hard enough keeping up with them in the old days. Many new vendors who had paid for permits to sell things were flooding the party and replacing the real talent as the life of the party. So things got rather mundane and chaotic at the same time...if you can wrap such an oxymoronic concept around your head. Naturally, the number of people who got dissatisfied with the party reached a quorum of sorts. Some felt inundated, others felt insecure in the chaos, others suddenly gained insight into the fact that they were addicted to the more unproductive things in life. Others realized they were addicted to productive things...but these productive things were too many to keep track of. And unbelievably, others were bored! So they packed their little belongings and moved to the other big party on the other side of town (Google +). Now this place had the stalls, soundstages, pedestals, pulpits, multi-tiered halls with ginormous viewing screens and badass sound. The place was immaculate, wall to wall of spotless white...and the toilets actually flushed. Every party had a designated room and there was nary a roadside vendor or street hustler for miles. But it was too well executed to feel like a party. You could get work done though...there were numerous offices, studios, gyms, and all sorts of neatly compartmentalized places where you could do exactly what you came to do without being distracted and with less fear of compromising security. Nah...that wasn't a party. So they left the Google ‘party’ (The G party), swallowed their pride, and came back to the Facebook party (The F Party). They were welcomed without judgement by their friends. To be honest, most of their friends didn’t even notice that they’d been gone. Some who had never left the F Party had instead taken a vow of abstinence but their withdrawal symptoms were too severe. They were also welcomed back without to much mocking. The party was much too busy for anyone to notice anything. Management noticed people coming back though. That gave them the confidence that they were doing the right thing and shouldn’t be worried about competition. At least the F Party is still a party right?
bottle with red liquid and a label with the 'f' logo
Bottled Fun by DrAjao
But what about the empty echoing halls of the G Party? Well, see, the G Party planners couldn’t care less. The whole complex has already been paid for (while the F Party people still have to pay heavy rents and mortgages). The G people also know that if a major calamity were to befall the F Party, they already have a place for all the displaced to continue their party. Till such a time (if it ever comes to that) the F Party goes on. Sadly the DNA of the frat boy party for fun’s sake has morphed into this Orwellian marketplace attempting to put the fun into bottles, cork them, and then sell to the highest bidder. So there's lots of fun to go around... ...but that's not exactly a party :-/ Epilogue: An example of a company whose DNA hasn’t changed is Walmart (hate ‘em or love ‘em). The DNA of Walmart from day one has been “lowest prices possible no matter what”. You would think that when they became one of the biggest companies in the universe, they would thumb their noses at their customers, rebrand and start charging luxury prices. Nah they stayed true to their DNA because it worked at bringing in the people. The above article is not out of malice toward Facebook. Far from it...I've spent too long studying Facebook at Hard Knocks University, so I'm in for the long haul. This is simply a warning that they could still lose their customers if they focus too much on the money rather than the value.

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