THE BLOG
10/07/2011 20:02 BST | Updated 10/09/2011 06:12 BST

Social Not-Working - How Facebook left love dead on Arrival

In the world of online, our appetite for our new crushes need never be sated. Like a fat kid tearing open chocolate eggs on Easter morning, you start off gorging yourself but by the afternoon you are left feeling tired and emotional.

I have a girl pal who wants a man with a 'bit of mystery about him.' Yet every man she allows to get past date three she follows on Twitter, adds on Facebook and then stalks through Google search - "just in case he has a dodgy past to hide." No chance of him hiding it, I think.

In the world of online, our appetite for our new crushes need never be sated. Like a fat kid tearing open chocolate eggs on Easter morning, you start off gorging yourself but by the afternoon you are left feeling tired and emotional. The temptation to know that little bit more about someone always drags us over the edge into knowing too much.

We are on a toxic loop of oversharing - with Facebook hooking us up and Twitter driving us apart.

Facebook is the soapbox where we do all our preening and bragging. We tag only our hottest pics, boast about our glam lives, join the groups of de rigeur books (that we've often never even read) just to make ourselves look clever. It is the edited, concentrated highlights of how we like the world to see ourselves. No wonder it's so easy to fall in love with each other on there

But Twitter is where we lose our self-edit. Every single brain fart escapes into the masses - our boring day at work, our risque taste in un-PC jokes, the fact we didn't really go straight home from the party when we told our girlfriends we had. The reality we are (not-so) secretly following Joey Essex.

When someone adds or follows you, you have to manage the plate-spinning tasks of watching what you say and keeping up with their needs. An afternoon spent offline can suddenly create armageddon because you haven't replied to your new squeeze's latest text, tweet, IM or message whilst you've been out - in fact by the time you check all your different ports of call it's time to do it all over again. Then your date complains when this makes you late for dinner.

Oh yes, dinner. You look forward to it all day - chatting over email together at work, having a sneaky Facebook chat while the boss isn't looking, reading each other's tweets and enthusiastically "lol"-ing any that are even vaguely funny. Then you sit opposite each other with the candles and menus and wonder why you've nothing left to say to each other.

My new rule is, be cruel if you have to. I have best mates - ones that make me laugh so hard I spit my tea everywhere when we meet up - who I can't stand to follow online because they are so crushingly dull. The same is true for dating. No-one wants to know everything someone thinks, so why hang around to hear it?

When swept along in the intoxicating first rush of a romance you may think you can't get enough of someone. The truth is, you can.