Facebook event read receipts ruin your excuse to never go out

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Is there anything that strikes fear deep into the heart like an invitation to the poetry reading of a guy that you met once, at a party, and who wore a cravat?

Thanks to Facebook introducing read receipts on its events, swerving the kind of soiree that’s about attractive as a chlamydia diagnosis has just become a lot more difficult – and a more dangerous social minefield.

Read receipts on Facebook private messages have already cornered the market in awfulness, given that it is now impossible (without workaround browser extensions) for users to view a message without the sender knowing.

The faux excuse: “Oh! I’m afraid I missed the message! Silly me!” has been a thing of the past for a while now, forcing the uninterested and those who prefer to never leave the comfort of home to invent illness and failing public transport to avoid social interaction.

Social media is not for connecting with people – it’s a conduit for feelings of inadequacy and candid pictures of politicians with witty slogans scrawled on top. Deep down, we all know this.

But with the introduction of read receipts on events, people are going to know that you didn’t even bother to look at the details of a protest march you would rather eat soggy broccoli for the rest of your life than attend.

Facebook told the Daily Dot that it is “piloting the ability for private event hosts and guests to know whether their friends they invited have seen the event”.

I emailed a rep to ask what we were all supposed to do now that we couldn’t feign ignorance of baby showers; I’m assured more information on the change will be made at a later date. I knew my email was read and received only because the rep replied, and that, my friends, is how it should be.

Message read. But what kind of weirdo keeps read receipts on?

Powered by Guardian.co.ukThis article was written by Hannah Jane Parkinson, for theguardian.com on Tuesday 15th September 2015 11.35 Europe/Londonguardian.co.uk © Guardian News and Media Limited 2010