# of friends & popularity issues

Originally, Friendster listed who the most popular people were in your network. Quickly, Fakesters such as Burning Man and Ali G rose to the top and the community worked to push them there.

Due to the tribes component, Tribe.net has not had the dramatic number of “Fakesters.” Recently, they implemented a new feature that, at first past, seems to imply the same popularity contest. They indicate under every user’s post the number of Friends that s/he has.

A brilliant discussion by the users has emerged over this topic, revealing why this is not identical to the Friendster phenomenon.

Some Tribe users clearly note that they find it sketchy for a user to have either too many or too few friends. The former makes them look like they need to collect friends for some personal reason and the latter makes them look like they are too much of a lurker with no friends. Of course, the numbers are read in line with how long someone has been on the site and the reasons for which s/he is here.

It’s also utterly fascinating because it’s a conversation about users challenging how they are perceived, how they perceive, how they are configured, how they present their identity. It’s all done without the moderation or guidance of anyone – emergent reflexivity. Yummy – that’s the best.

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2 thoughts on “# of friends & popularity issues

  1. Lisa Chau

    I want to know when Friendster became HookUpster — When I joined, I was not under the impression that the system aimed at people who wanted meet others for casual sex.

    * * *

    I’m really interested in the work you’re doing!
    I’d like to learn more about it after finals week…

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