The Science Behind Friending and Unfriending

Believe it or not someone found a way to turn Facebook into a science.According to, NM Incite, “a Nielson McKinsey company specializing in data on social media,” polled about 1,800 Facebook members and found out the reasons behind accepting or ‘unfriending’ a friend.Not surprisingly, 82 percent of users added friends based on knowing these people in real life, while 60 percent added people they are actually friends with. reported that eight percent of users add friends simply based on how attractive they are, seven percent base it on the “quality of the photo” and another seven percent simply accept every request. I’m beginning to think science isn’t so complicated after all?

It comes as no surprise, however, that seven percent of users admitted to accepting friends “merely to increase their numbers of Facebook acquaintances.” Let’s face it, no one really has 1,023 friends!

Based on NM Incite’s research, the top two reasons for ‘unfriending’ a friend were because of offensive comments and not knowing the person well enough.

Further research showed that six percent ‘unfriend’ friends because they update their status too often, another six percent delete friends because they add too many people and three percent of users delete friends because they don’t update their status enough. Who would have thought Facebook stalkers were so testy?

Unfriending someone on Facebook doesn’t seem to garner the same effect as actually having a falling out with a friend. reported on ‘unfriending’ being just as  popular as the social networking site alone.

Jimmy Kimmel wrote a song about it and the act even has an annual holiday called, Defriend Day.