Late-night host Jimmy Kimmel is hoping to get people to join him for “National UnFriend Day” on Nov. 17, encouraging others to “unFriend” people on Facebook that they’ve never met, or wouldn’t consider a friend in real life.
“Friendship is a sacred thing, and I believe Facebook is cheapening it,” Jimmy Kimmel joked in his monologue.
Kimmel estimates that 90% of most people’s Facebook friends are what he deems “fake friendships,” pointing out that it’s virtually impossible for anyone to actually have over 1,000 friends in real life.
So what criteria should be used to determine whether you should unfriend someone? The comedian suggest that:
“If you wouldn’t loan someone $50, unfriend them. If you wouldn’t invite them to your birthday party, unfriend them. If you wouldn’t cry if they got hit by a bus, unfriend them. It doesn’t have to be a hostile thing.”
Jimmy has already enlisted TV personalities such as William Shatner, Danny McBride, and Dr. Oz to record fake PSAs to help promote the new holiday.
According to PC Magazine, “unfriend” was selected as the word of the year in 2009 by The New Oxford American Dictionary, officially adding it to the lexicon.
A recent study from the University of Colorado- Denver showed that the top reason people unfriend others on Facebook is due to “persistent, inane posts.”
Jimmy Kimmel gave various examples of these types of pointless updates from a woman named Gina Lovato. He encouraged others to “unfriend all the Ginas of the world.” Unfortunately, his point didn’t seem to get across, as on the next show Gina had over 700 Facebook friends, up from 545 the night before. As of this writing, she now has over 2,700 friends on her Facebook page thanks to all the attention.
“A friend is someone you have a special relationship with, not someone who asks, ‘Which Harry Potter character are you?'” added Kimmel. “Remember five years ago when nobody was on Facebook and you didn’t know what the guy you took high school biology with was having for lunch? Remember how that was fine? Let’s go back to that.”
“Jimmy Kimmel Live” airs weeknights on ABC.
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