If the internet is the wild west, Facebook is your homestead. And while everything can (and, for better or worse, does) go on the internet proper, Facebook is your little corner of the prairie to call your own. So are you doing it right? Let’s find out.

You do not have 1,500 friends

No matter what Facebook says, you do not have 1,500. Name the number of people you’d lend twenty bucks to. Those are your friends. Everyone else on your Facebook account are either “people you met and liked enough” or “people you hate and need to stalk.”

Now, that isn’t it to say you should cut down your Facebook radically, or that you should become some angry old man who talks about how back in the day, your “friends” actually had to be your friends, gosh darn it. Co-workers, old friends, acquaintances, and exes all make up a healthy Facebooker’s friend diet. Other than cluttering your newsfeed, there are other risks to Facebook obesity. Any friend-weight at or above 1,500 puts you at an increased risk of looking like a jackass.

Your Profile Picture should Adhere to the Following Rules

*No artistic photos. You are not artistic if Facebook is your only gallery.

*Do not have a “funny” picture. At worst, it’s unfunny. And even if it is, it’s not funny twice.

*Don’t be posing with a boy/girl unless they’re your boy/girlfriend.

*You know what? Don’t even do that. No one in the entire world likes couples.

There are more rules, of course: no landscape photos, no wearing-sunglasses-and-no-smile pictures, no pictures of you posing next to a clearly disinterested celebrity; whatever. If you adhere to these four main rules, the rest is all fine.

Facebook Relationships are Serious Business

Today, a Facebook official relationship is the first marker of a real relationship. More than that, it’s something that’s broadcast to your eight-hundred or so closest pals and your whole cadre of exes. It will also be the first thing that’s broadcast to any potential hookup interest who decides to use the powers of the internet to determine of you look good while sober, and your Facebook relationship will force them to back off into the layer of lurking.

So don’t blow it.

What I mean is that if you’re not serious with the person; if they’re erratic, maybe, or if you’ve broken up twice this week: hold off. Because when you go Facebook official, it’s on the record. When you go off being Facebook official, that’s also public knowledge which is weird. A Facebook relationship shouldn’t just be with someone you’d be willing to take home to your parents, but also someone you’d be willing to show off to friends, roommates, acquaintances, and exes. Because thanks to the internet, now you are.

Status Updates are for Twitter

That’s basically it. It’s impolite now to stream your random thoughts on Facebook; it looks more like you’re talking to yourself than anything. If anyone wants to hear about what you ate for dinner or your thoughts on Rick Ross (weirdly positive, if anything) they can follow you on Twitter.

They won’t, of course, but they could.

Do not Bother People

Facebook is more “social” than “network.” So don’t try to network. If people want to see your band, feel free to let them know, but inviting everyone you know to your bands FREE ONLINE LP!!!! Four times doesn’t do anything productive.

Before you send out a group message or event, ask yourself: “would I ignore this and possibly resent the person who sent this?” If the answer is yes, don’t send it. If not, you’re a very forgiving person, but the point stands: most people hate this sort of thing, so don’t do it.

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Well, hopefully these tips helped. And if they didn’t, don’t feel too bad. There’s always Google+