The other day, I discovered quite the surprise in my Facebook command center: someone had poked me. I was mildly taken aback as it had been months (which in Internet time is like decades) since I’d seen anyone use the classic “poke” feature instead of some ghastly “Are You Flirtable?” or “Are You Hot?” or “Do You Want To Have Sex With Me RIGHT NOW?” application. As you can imagine, I was very intrigued. I quickly set upon an impromptu investigation of my mysterious admirer, hoping to learn just who this person was that a) thought I was poke-worthy, and b) still used poke in the first place. What I found reminded me that there are still many lessons to be learned about Facebook etiquette; lessons, I hope, I can share with you.
My journey after the jump…

The excitement began when I received this notification from a mysterious stranger named Elena B. I’m omitting her last name out of respect to her privacy (read: I’m going to make fun of her profile).

After receiving her poke, I clicked over to Elena’s profile and found this: a simple, uncluttered page with nary a suitable profile pic in sight — always a bad sign. Hey, Elena, it’s called Facebook, not BIG-BEN-BOOK. (Zing!)

Well, unless Elena was actually a giant clock tower with access to the internet, this profile page simply would not do. I took the next logical step that all pokees are entitled to: I proceeded to the photos section. Let the excitement begin…

WHAT?!?! This was a flagrant violation of Facebook etiquette. It’s a well-known rule that if you engage a stranger, let alone POKE them, you are obligated to make your photos available in return. At the very least, give us more than Big Ben! Elena clearly doesn’t realize that in the world of Facebook, you’re guilty until proven innocent, which means I can only assume the worst about her. In this case, her lack of photos suggest that she suffers from either a weight problem or serious aesthetic challenges, and to be honest, I wouldn’t be surprised if it was a little from column A and a little from column B, if you catch my drift.

Without visual aids, there’s nothing left to do but judge Elena irrationally by the information she’s scrawled on her profile. First, there’s her About Me section. The fact that she opens with the clichéd declaration, “I love the beach,” suggests that she’s possibly a very large idiot, but then again, maybe not. After all, she does claim that “I have a penchant for fabulous, intense minds,” and that’s never more obvious than in her list of favorites:

Note the presence of lip gloss, Millionaire and Ugly Betty — three staples of “fabulous, intense minds.” I also enjoy her generic, grammatically-incorrect quote, which sounds all nice but doesn’t really make any sense at all. She probably came up with it herself to feel better after incurring some embarrassing treadmill injury at the gym (which she needs to go to on account of her morbid obesity).

Final Verdict: No face + dumb profile = ridicule.
So the lesson here is that if you try to flirt with someone online, you have to be ready to show the goods as well, otherwise the object of your crush is likely to take a more critical, and probably irrational, look at the junk on your profile. Be warned, people. Facebook doesn’t come without consequences…