cognitive responses to being unfriended on Facebook
This is a study concerning how people respond to being unfriended on Facebook, based on factors like frequency of Facebook use, what their relationship with the unfriender was, etc. The most intriguing claim of this study is that when someone unfriends someone else on Facebook, it can often be seen as a termination of the relationship as a whole. This is not a revolutionary idea, which is why this is so interesting to me -- we live in a world in which it is naturalized to dissolve a relationship by clicking a link that says "Unfriend." I have only unfriended a few people over the course of my having a Facebook (I've had one since I was sixteen or seventeen, and I'm now twenty-three), and I only know of being unfriended by two people. In both of these situations, I wasn't heartbroken or anything when I found out (which took probably a few months, because I'm not one of these people who communicates only through Facebook), but I did mention it to a mutual friend of myself and the unfriender in one of the situations (as a joke, but the fact that I mentioned it says something). I took the virtual friendship termination into the real world by sharing it with other people face to face. Neither of the people who unfriended me were ever especially close friends, so it's informative to think about why the loss of a friendship that was never actually strong or even realized was impactful to me at all.