Should Facebook add more “in a relationship” options? Or should we just be discreet?

Is it tacky to announce your relationship status on a Social Network?

Move over Brad and Angie! Now with Facebook, you too can be as embarrassingly public with your infidelities as a Hollywood celebrity!

Unless it’s really going to benefit your business or career — announcing your new relationship status is probably not a good idea in a public forum. And it’s a really, really bad idea if you care about your career reputation.

Personally, I’d like to see people use more tact, thoughtfulness and discretion before they click any “In a Relationship” button out here in Facebook-land.”

Many of my solidly married friends don’t even announce their relationship status on Facebook.

But seems that people who just hooked up two weeks ago at a party are quick to brag about how in love they are and click that: “In a Relationship” button.

And the brutally honest and much more realistic: “It’s complicated.”

I even know a woman who clicked “In a Relationship” when her “boyfriend” was a personal ad pen pal who lived in another state and they hadn’t even met yet.

Social Currency and trust is what it’s all about in the new era of Social Networks. Our network is our net worth. Consider how your actions will be regarded in terms of your overall trustworthiness and “flake factor” before you post anything in a social forum. Relationships come and go, but reputations linger in Cyberspace forever.

I see grown, middle aged adults on Facebook like dumping their ex-spouse for someone they hooked up with a few weeks ago and then announcing and bragging about their new love affair publicly on Facebook.

It can inspire some incredible cruelty and tastelessness. Or what many call: “Facebook Drama.”

Perhaps I am being a bit old fashioned and “Miss Manners” here by suggesting that we wait six months at minimum, until relationships are solid — just as one might want to wait 3 months before announcing they’re pregnant, or waiting until they have an offer letter in hand before announcing a new job.

Today, someone posted this on Facebook:

“I am seeing someone, but that is not an option. Here there’s ‘its complicated’ — but that it is not. And there is ‘in a relationship’ but we are not there yet. We are trying to go slow, but I want a way to know I am not available but am very interested in someone. Might that change?”

Do you think Facebook should add a new relationship status?

Facebook is considering some new “In a relationship” options. What do you think? Here are some options that readers of “All Facebook” have suggested:

– need a rebound

– in a rebound relationship

– hate my ex and need a rebound

– off the market

– common law marriage

– seeing someone

– confused

– stalkers not wanted

– separated, not looking

– serial dater

– cruising

– just looking


– “I gave up.”

Published by Gisélle Bisson

I am a storyteller. I am a bridge between the worlds of high tech and high touch. The main communities I build are between thought leaders in Technology, Entertainment and Sustainability. (Kind of like a TED conference.) These are the early adopters, risk takers and super connected connecters who can set your ideas on fire! As a veteran Silicon Valley tech PR executive and product launch visibility expert, I have launched more than 30 paradigm-shifting products and consumer technology companies in my career -- products that changed your life and are used by tens of millions of consumers. I was on the teams that introduced major innovations we now take for granted -- like email, video editing, ink jet printers and mobile devices. I've promoted products that reached 5 million to 40 million customers -- paying customers, not eyeballs. We did this almost 100% with free PR and social media -- not paid advertising. Increasingly all business must be social, sustainable, sharable and conscious. And I believe social media is the catalyst of this conscious convergence and shift. I've learned that it's not just about "content" or "engagement" -- it's about creating authentic communities around an event that share your news and spread the word for you. I combine social media with press relations, speaking engagements, events, social ads, email lists and street teams to generate waves of awareness that catapult your launch and sustain it. Move forward, into the future. I can help you make a Visibility Shift.

3 thoughts on “Should Facebook add more “in a relationship” options? Or should we just be discreet?

  1. After having seen ‘The Socialnetwork’ I think that this whole “tell people your relationship status”-thing was part of the original idea. However, I don’t really want to know that about people and I didn’t put up my status as well. I think people underestimate the impact of these things and how many people actually see these information. If they knew that probably hundreds of people (even those you wouldn’t have told) see this, they would probably reconsider putting it up.

  2. great post, and I agree with people waiting to announce the new relationship….what about those who announce TO the said relationship person that they are NOW SINGLE…maybe I am also Miss Manners, but I think a break up should be done in person.

  3. HAHAHA. This would be quite interesting to see but I don’t want my newsfeed bombarded with changing relationship statuses-some people change their relationship status like they change their clothes-once a day or sometimes more…

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