When A Facebook Friend Becomes A Fan

Commentator Andrei Codrescu creates a modern-day biblical passage that describes the ideal of "friendship" as decreed by Facebook. There's a 5,000 friend limit.

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MARY LOUISE KELLY, host:

The world is changing for commentator Andrei Codrescu. He finds evidence of this change in a new gospel - a gospel of digital friendship.

ANDREI CODRESCU: A man with many friends is rich and blessed, sayeth the good books. But a man with many friends on Facebook is cursed, sayeth Facebook, who sets the limit of a man's friends at 5,000. And those who dare ask a man with more than 5,000 friends to be a friend will be mightily rebuked by Facebook, claiming on that man's behalf that he already hadeth too many friends and no more will be allowed, so speaketh Facebook, the ordinator of friends.

And those who dare ask for friendship after the 5,000 have taken their places in the pews and aisles of friendship must become fans and stand outside with palm fronds moving in their hands to cool the man's body from the rigors of friendship.

Now, let the truth be known that Facebook has decreed 5,000 to be no more than a crowd on a Saturday night - more than a party, but less than a legion. Because Facebook fears rebellion, though it encourages commerce. And there will rise in the land and army called the body book and it will wipe the grin off the face of Facebook.

And there will be myriads, 5,000 by 5,000, and they will be like leaves of grass to the ledgers of accountants. And this will happen on 1/11/11. So sayeth this prisoner of the decrees of Facebook, the stingiest landlord in cyber-landia.

KELLY: Commentator Andrei Codrescu. His latest book is The Poetry Lesson. And since youre wondering yes, he has 4,995 friends on Facebook.

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