Once you’ve had Facebook, you’ll never go back

In watching the reaction to the new Facebook today — reaction that ranged from irritation to outrage — I was reminded of David Letterman’s straight-faced observation about pop star Madonna back in the 1980s. “I think she wants to shock us,” Letterman said, tongue in cheek.

Earlier today I compared FB to a significant other who flirts or picks a fight just to make sure we’re still paying attention and not taking them for granted.

Sure, there’s some legitimate reason for upgrading and offering your users the latest and best features. But I think FB wants to remind its bazillion users how much it means to us.

Even if that means pissing us off.

As someone who has been in the communications business since I was a teenager, I can testify to the feeling engendered by reader reaction. No matter if it’s a complaint about a controversial story or photo or, even worse, the removal of a beloved comic strip, the response is appreciated. It means people are paying attention, that you’re still part of their everyday lives.

Face it, most of us might never take up Twitter (although you should, because it’s really fun) or Google+ (yawn). But for those bazillion of us who check in to FB every day — even if our devotion is far more casual than “checking in” via Foursquare or more low key than posting our latest rant about an irritating co-worker or prodigious child — we’ll keep checking in, no matter how many times we threaten to quit FB.

And no silly revamping of the way our pages look will keep us away.

Now, let me tell you what I don’t like about the new Facebook …

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