Once a fun time-waster -- or a way to see if the girl you had a crush on freshman year of high school is still hot -- social media has become something of a necessary evil, not unlike the DMV or air travel.
Those comparisons are particularly apt because, like renewing your driver's license or flying, the use of sites like Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest and other myriad social media platforms is a part of modern life. In fact, we would likely look askew at someone who defiantly proclaims they're not on Facebook and begin to wonder if they're on the lam or part of some anti-technology separatist movement.
After all, 67 percent of adults with Internet access use some form of social media and the same percentage of those polled said they used Facebook in particular, according to a recent study by the Pew Internet and American Life Project.
The latter of those two statistics is eye-catching when you consider Facebook's ever-changing, purposely confusing user-privacy policies and the near universal understanding that Facebook, or rather other people on Facebook, can be very, very annoying.
For weeks, I've been monitoring my own Facebook newsfeed in the hopes of crafting a list of archetypes that, in my experience, reflect many of the site's millions of users, at least in this country.
In the vein of author Mitch Albom's best-selling book, these are "The Five People You'll Meet on Facebook."
This week, in honor of the different kinds of people you're likely to encounter on social media, a playlist of songs about the different kinds of people you're likely to encounter in the real world.
Feel free to share this column with your friends and family on Facebook. Man, I really can't help myself.
Follow reporter Patrick Donohue at twitter.com/IPBG_Patrick.
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