Greetings! My name is Mark Zuckerberg, chairman and CEO of Facebook, Inc. You may have noticed that your account has been blocked and you cannot log in. Don’t panic! The solution is quite simple. Recently, we here at Facebook decided that all accounts need to bear the full legal name of the user, not a pseudonym or nickname. I’m sure at this point you’re probably thinking: What? I’ve been a loyal Facebook user for nearly a decade under the name all my friends know me by, why is this important now?
I mean, my real identity can be easily found due to the massive amounts of personal data I have willingly uploaded to the internet, where the whole goddamn world can see it. So isn’t it enough that Facebook knows my name, age, gender, birthday, hair color, eye color, race, current and past addresses and phone numbers and email addresses and jobs, the names of my friends and spouse and parents and siblings and in-laws and past girlfriends and entire extended family, my bank account number, my credit card number, the numbers of my PayPal and eBay and Amazon accounts (and every item I’ve purchased), my high school and college (and when I attended and graduated), my current and past jobs (and how long I worked at each), and what languages I speak?
Not to mention my political and religious beliefs, who I voted for in national and local elections, my MSN screenname, my LinkedIn profile, my Twitter profile, my Tumblr blogs, my Xbox gamertag, my PlayStation network ID, my Wii code, what websites I comment on, what weddings and parties and meetings and sports events I’ve attended, every place I’ve gone on vacation or a work trip, what hotels I stayed at, what restaurants I visited, what kind of car I rented, and what airline I flew on?
And my favorite bands, TV shows, movies, books, video games, color, food, websites, coffee shop, pizza place, and sports teams? And my daily routine? And the hundreds of photos of me and all my acquaintances? And every comment I’ve posted on the important events in my life and the lives of everyone I know? What gives, Facebook?
Let me assure you that all this is for your own safety and has nothing to do with the sale of your personal data to advertisers, nor the rumor that the NSA has given us millions of dollars in taxpayer money for the disclosure of that same data, nor the fact that when Facebook went public in 2012, our shares sold for way less than anticipated due to the revelation that millions of accounts were fake, generated by bots and spammers. Nothing at all. IT’S FOR YOUR OWN SAFETY, you selfish pricks.
But, I hear you say, Facebook’s methods in this matter are unusually severe. No warnings were issued, accounts suspected of being under a fake name were immediately suspended and flagged, not to be reinstated until proper identification was posted and the account name changed. This included traditional Native American names such as Dana Lone Elk (plenty of irony there). Isn’t this emotional blackmail? My whole LIFE is wound up in Facebook: my contacts with friends and family and coworkers, all my photos and data … is that fair?
To which I would reply: fair schmair. When you joined Facebook, you signed a legally binding agreement to honor our terms and rules. Don’t have time to read all that fine print or uncheck all those boxes? Tough titty. Trying to further your career by using a stage or DJ name? Not on our watch, pal. Need to keep your personal and public lives separate? Bite me. Hiding from an abusive family, stalker or former boyfriend? Waah, poor you. Don’t like the way we run our company? Go use MySpace, schmuck. Ever hear the term “putting all your eggs in one basket”? I didn’t think so. Look it up.
Of course, exceptions will be made for famous people like Whoopi Goldberg, but the rest of you are screwed, Jude. Here is a short list of account names no longer accepted:
Jed I. Knight
Chris P. Bacon
Brock O. Lee
Our basic message remains: You will obey because we are Facebook and we said so. My personal fortune is estimated at $35 billion. Not million, billion with a B. I wipe my nose with $100 bills. How much did YOU make last year?
Love and kisses,