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Christian Social Network Like Facebook or MySpace


A fascinating theme threads its way through many reviews of the movie ‘The Social Network’. Roger Ebert seemed to lead the way (makes sense) and here are a couple of representative quotes:


“To conceive of Facebook, Zuckerberg (Jesse Eisenberg) needed to know almost nothing about relationships or human nature (and apparently he didn't).”




“…programming languages and techniques are widely known, but it was Zuckerberg who intuited how he could link them with a networking site. The genius of Facebook requires not psychological insight but its method of combining ego with interaction. Zuckerberg wanted to get revenge on all the women at Harvard. To do that, he involved them in a matrix that is still growing.”


Even the name of the film, “The Social Network”, is cold: it has a post 2000’s computery feel to it, like “The Matrix” but without the chance of anything blowing up (besides Facebook’s bank account). Imagine – the largest structure ever devised to bring people together in a social scaffolding was constructed by someone who essentially had no insight into relationships or human nature. How can this be?


It’s simple, actually. Social networks are as inherently emotional as highway concrete. They are a WAY to socially interact, a route to a goal sent through a router, and not to be confused with the warm glow of friendship or the murmur of good conversation or the firm grip of a handshake in and of themselves. It is the people IN the social network that transform it (or not) into something worthwhile and interesting.


Much of Facebook has devolved into the random sputterings of the frustrated or time-wasting games involving cyber farms and invented personas. Facebook users have increasingly fallen for the easy trap of thinking that any interaction that makes them feel good automatically must BE good. The meaningless action of posting supportive ‘statuses’ has become a secular (and virtually toothless) form of praying for somebody. But this form of praying only works in bulk, like buying a box of good vibes from Costco. As Mark Zuckerberg intuited, it is quantity, not quality.


It is incumbent upon social networks to up the ante in terms of doing real good, and Christian Social Networks like are stepping up to the plate. The amazing thing about a prayer request is this: only God can answer a prayer, but you can answer a prayer request. Any Christian can. By providing a forum where prayer requests can be met and other sites like it bring real and selfless action to a field that can so easily just be empty words and statistics. Your ‘status’ for the day doesn’t change – your day is still good or bad, your weather is still fair or poor, your team either just won or lost. But you are praying for someone, in detail, for the glory of God. It’s not ‘combining ego with interaction’. It’s infinitely better than that.

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