Digital Love: Christmas gift ideas that cost nothing #1 : Give your Friend a Facebook Makeover!

In the run-up to Christmas 2010, The Jack of Hearts will bring you five truly novel gift ideas that are both amazing and solely internet-based. Who’d have thought ‘austerity’ would be this winter’s buzzword? It’s all about stripping back those daunting gift responsibilities until all you’re left with is your parents and your other halves. In other words, recession-chic is in full flow so three-dimensional presents only go to people who once gave you life, or who currently give you head.
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Admittedly there’s a certain self-indulgent pleasure in offloading someone with an expensive gift, but nothing beats keeping all your money to yourself, and so we kick off by swapping price-tags for remove-tags with #1:
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Give them a Facebook Makeover!
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Or as I've come to coin it... "A Fakeover!" (exlamation mark compulsory).

All of us like to think our Facebook profiles look fantastic and yet when we look at our friends’ profiles we often find ourselves thinking ‘Oh God, what a loser’. It never occurs to us that we look stupid on Facebook because we’re incapable of truly turning a critical eye on ourselves, which is why offering to give someone else a Fakeover is the perfect Christmas gift.
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It’s the polar opposite to ‘Fraping’ (a phenomenon that I’ve always seen as being cringingly puerile with a nasty whiff of the pubertal about it). So great are Fakeovers I’m surprised there aren’t freelance consultants out there offering them already. So, ask for their login details and away we go:
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First off - Religious Status and Favourite Quotations. Is being a ‘Jedi’ really that amusing? No. Does ‘Very Conservative’ make them sound like a tiny bit of a twat? Yes. Sort these out. Do they really need 15 badly typed out in-jokes festering under the heading ‘Favourite Quotations’ when really the section should be called ‘Yes, see, I’m FRIENDS with her, SEE, SEEEEE, and our life is really REALLY witty and fun”? No.
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With their actual name on Facebook, if it’s not their actual name, then change it to their actual name. I know this sounds obvious but some people actually give themselves a stupid middle name, forgetting the fact that whenever they see someone else with a stupid made-up middle name, a small part of them dies. So do James Engleberry Dub-Step Ass-Bandit Squidoo Smith a favour and sort that out.
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Now the hard part. Grooming your friend’s Facebook photos…
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Start off by appointing yourself chief remove-tagger. The rules of thumbnails are:

1. Nobody should have more than 1,000 Facebook photos.
2. Parties, group holidays and weddings are the only excuse for having more than 5 photos of the same event.
3. Few people need to see your friend grinning sweatily in an awful skirt from Jigsaw. Nobody needs it from fifteen angles.
4. Kangaroos, stick insects, mountain ranges and random lakes are a NO.
5. Nobody needs a photo of their house looking magical in the snow.

And most of all...

6. NOBODY wants an augmented reality of Thailand, in its entirety, in photographic form, laid out across 17 fucking pages. Thailand should be a backdrop to Leonardo DiCaprio looking hot on a DVD that you’ll probably never watch again. Thailand should not be the vast majority of your online presence. Especially when you're a public school girl from Kent.
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To finish off a girl’s Facebook makeover simply remove their mobile number for them, any attempts at jokes beneath their profile picture and all of their HAR HAR ‘siblings’.
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If you’re giving a boy a Fakeover you need to set aside a good day and half really. Start off with their “Interested In” section. If they’re heterosexual, lack self-esteem and benefit from reading a daily reminder of their chosen position on the sexual compass then be a dear and let them keep their sad little “Interested In: Women” on there. However, for confident straight men, those who are in relationships, very macho men, bisexuals and gay men, remove their “Interested In” section all together, as it’s entirely unnecessary and they’ve no need to either advertise or reassure themselves.
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The beginners guide to remove-tagging a boy’s life in pictures starts with the following (to be read aloud in a Mary Poppins voice): Double chins, sweat patches, arses, pornography, cocks, pints of snakebite, people urinating in the street, infinity pools in Cyprus, people exhaling smoke in front of festival tents, piles of sick, self-portraits of oneself sunbathing, close-ups of insect bites, diving off the sides of boats, people sitting on the toilet, lines of men with pants around their ankles, Google Images of the homeless, people hugging the toilet, drunk and meaningless conversations around wooden tables, characters from Southpark, innuendos on street signs, close-ups of testicles, hotel bathrooms and anything depicting what they seem to think is a mythological equivalent to scholastic achievement, for example, lifting up one’s dirty white t-shirt to overtly exhibit a chavtastically toned stomach.
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Some boys fall victim to the black death too, which is where their Facebook photos suggest they actually live in a marquee at a perpetual never-ending black tie event, furtively clutching onto the sequined hip of someone they should have shagged while they had the chance. You need to sort this out.
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Finally make sure they’re not Facebook friends with their parents, unjoin them from any groups that are redundant like ‘Leona To Win: Pleeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeease Vote For Leona Everyone!!!!!!’, and ta-da: You’ve given them a profile of comfort and joy!
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Check back for #2 on my list of amazing Christmas gifts that cost nothing, later on this month...!

2 comments:

  1. This post is absolute genius. I love everything about it. Definitely agree on the Thailand thing, I have a guy I went to school with who's "gone travelling" and every photo he uploads is him stood gormlessly in front of a famous landmark. In one shot you can see him in front of the Leaning Tower of Pisa, while in the background, dozens of other tourists are having the exact same photo taken (some of them doing the hilarious "pretending to push it over" pose). Most depressing thing ever.

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  2. Arrrghhhhh..... Everything it ok until you open your email and you see "You have been tagged in 108 photos" there are people who have nothing to do at work and they tag even just your finger, leg, etc. in the photo.

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