Anti-social networking: e-hate your friends
Rob Peters | December 21, 2007 at 09:32 amby
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"How did you two meet?"
"Hatebook. I would have had no idea Tom even knew I existed if it weren't for that site. But magically, the hate was mutual and here we are."
TORONTO (Reuters) - Tired of phony online friends? Make enemies instead. Riding on the popularity of social networks such as Facebook and MySpace, new Web sites are poking fun at online friendships that connect you to the people you like, by turning attention to the ones you don't.
Over the past 18 months, sites such Snubster, Enemybook and Hatebook are appealing to Internet users who get a kick out of the tongue-in-cheek humor of mocking their friends and others who are just plain cynical.
"I didn't understand these fake-friend war chests that people were so busy building online," said Bryant Choung, a technology consultant who started Snubster last year.
"I would get Facebook requests from people I talked to for three minutes at a bar or party, and now this person wants to go online to peruse all of my photos and contacts. I just didn't get it," the 26-year-old added.
Snubster, a Facebook application and a Web site with 16,000 users worldwide, lets users compile people and things they dislike.
No one from Facebook, which boasts 59 million active users worldwide, was available to comment about the sites.
When Facebook opened up its network to outside applications earlier this year, some users decided it was an opportunity to poke fun at the phenomenon.
Kevin Matulef, the creator of Enemybook, said the idea for his Facebook application started as a joke last summer when friends at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) were asking if someone was a real friend or a Facebook friend.
Enemybook, which has 9,000 users, is similar to Snubster in that it lets you "enemy" so-called friends, public figures and fictitious characters.
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