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Facebook Shrinks Your Connection to the Stars


You have come closer to Kevin Bacon than any actor in Hollywood. Facebook’s social network, where your hundreds of friends you never met, seems to put you into the pantheon of Mt. Olympus. You no longer have to worry about six degrees of separation. You may be there in four.

Twitter too has created the anonymous follower where you may measure who’s requested to be among your list of unknown profile photos you see on a regular basis.

Where did they come from and why are they following? We used to call it “stalking” and sought court orders to cease and desist.

So, nowadays, you could be one of three million people who are closer to Chad Ochocinco than Antonio Cromartie is to his countless children, who are likely not followers, though the mother of his children may have their attorneys among the followers.

With over 700 million friends on Facebook, you may never have faced most of them. Their interface counts now as a communication with the stars. Someone must be on Brad Pitt’s list. Someone you know must still be following the late Elizabeth Taylor or the always late Lady Gaga.

Most popular are the connections to sports stars that are followed equally by young men and young women. They are no longer six degrees away from fame, fortune, and good luck. You can be a lucky follower who is given a mention, making your Klout score soar.

And Facebook does not take into account that, when gramps was a truant student in Cambridge, once threw a snowball at Calvin Coolidge when he was governor of Massachusetts, when the future president was walking up Beacon Hill. So many missed opportunities to infamous history are missed.

There are 69 billion connections on Facebook and likely nearly as many folks on Twitter. You can likely count on the fact that one of your friends (and followers) has a number of connections equal to your own.

We are now three degrees separated from someone else on the planet. Open a window. It’s getting close in here.


William Russo's newest book is now out, ready for your tablet, your smartphone, your Kindle or Nook. Read RED SOX 2011: A WHIMSICAL AUTOPSY to find a month-by-month examination of the team, showing all the signs of trouble that most sports media missed. His other sports books are SEX, DRUGS, SPORTS & WHIMSY and RAJON RONDO: SUPERSTAR! 







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