How do I know this? Our daughter is a freshman and is interested in joining a sorority. She told us that all of the girls that are already in sororities and charged with recruiting incoming freshmen have to deactivate their Facebook accounts during sorority rush. If that does not demonstrate both the ubiquity and power of Facebook, nothing will.
Even with social networking ‘Greek’ life on college campuses around the United States have retained their appeal to many students. The friendships and connections can last a lifetime. It is a uniquely North American ritual most popular in the United States. While ‘pinning’ has gone by the wayside, the Greek system is representative of many of the things that take place on Facebook and other social networking sites, except that it is not virtual. However if you are familiar with hazing in real life you should also be familiar with virtual hazing on social networking platforms. It happens and it’s not good.
The fact that sorority recruiters are forced to deactivate their Facebook accounts (one assumes that for now Google+ accounts are allowed much to Google’s chagrin?) demonstrates the way college students interact. Mark Zuckerberg doubtless would be proud and aggravated at the same time.
A Ryan Tate article Monday on Gawker http://gaw.kr/oqbE0y highlights how colleges and schools can turn people into Facebook maniacs. I assume that asking current sorority members to deactivate their accounts during rush is some sort of defense against turning the rushing frosh’s into maniacs. I presume that fraternities are not doing the same thing but maybe that’s my gender prejudice.
While Greek life during my undergrad days was very popular I chose to not participate yet had many good friends who enjoyed their experience so I am not judging the positives or negatives of being in a sorority. Up until now I have given little thought to how online social networking might impact real-life social networking. The power of Facebook has met with the power of the Greek system. Facebook appears to be the loser in this round. Or is it?