Diigo: Social Networking Or Social Suicide?

As everyone who works at findingDulcinea knows, yesterday, I joined Diigo. Diigo is a social networking tool that allows you to bookmark sites and share them with your friends. When you sign up, it asks if you want to invite other people you know on Diigo to be your friends. When you click invite contacts, it invites them.

Unfortunately, I didn’t actually scroll down and realize that underneath my 5 Dulcinea friends on Diigo was a list of every single person I had ever emailed in my life. By time I realized, it was too late. I thought maybe if I failed to activate my account, I’d be protected. Alas, this was not to be the case.

Around 11:30pm last night, it started happening. My roommates and their poor mother had just walked through the door of our house, returning from a nice vacation in Napa Valley. “How was your trip?” I asked wanely. Then, before waiting for much of answer, I started screaming. Screaming about all the contacts I had worked so hard to establish, agonizing over each email, only to have my character defiled by spam reading, “Hi Guys! Let’s be Friends.”

I refused to be consoled, but I did spend a few minutes watching Sarah Silverman on David Letterman. She told a story about how when she worked at Saturday Night Live she stabbed Al Franken in the head with a pencil.

“If Sarah Silverman really did that, that’s way worse than what I did, right?”
“I’m sure she did it!” My roommate’s mom said. “And it’s way worse. Definitely.”

I have joked previously that I want to start to a club called “What Would Sarah Do” as a tribute to Sarah Palin. (Shoot a moose, wink, and offer to find some examples and bring them back…) But I think a better life motto is: What Would Sarah Silverman Do? She would find a way to make this funny.

So yes. I didn’t breathe for 12 hours. I cried. I briefly had an away message up threatening suicide until a polite friend suggested, “lose the death wish, Rache.” But the point is, as my Good Friend formerly known as Sig Oth once explained, “Jews have to make everything funny.”

So, here we have it: Funniest Moments of My Diigo Disaster

  • After promising myself to be and be like Sarah, I returned my bedroom to start hyperventilating. I grabbed my phone, and starting frantically scrolling through my phone, seeing if knew anyone who had a really soothing voice. Unfortunately, most of the people in my phone are people that I would never call, and many of them are people who’s mere names trigger more anxiety. I then spent sometime staring at my BlackBerry repeating, “Oh My God, I have no friends. And I invited hundreds of people who are not actually my friends to be my friend on Diigo. This is my darkest hour! This is it! My very DARKEST HOUR.” I flung myself into my bed and buried my face in my pillow. When I finally lifted my head, the lights were out. “You have to be kidding me,” I blurted out to no one. “The lights are out? You mean it is my darkest hour?? This is a joke.” (the weight of my head crashing into the pillow had dislodged the plug.)
  • On my run the next morning, I encouraged myself to distract myself from thinking about my personal problems, and focus on something soothing like the financial crisis.
  • The VIP contact who I was most worried about had emailed me, “U can’t be serious.” I was in a total panic, but we ended up having a perfectly nice email exchange, ending with him promising me that I hadn’t lost my biting sense of humor (Sarah Silverman here I come!)
  • My mother’s friend from high school sent this completely hilarious email (hilarious in context):

i love you but can’t see myself doing this – nothing personal, i adore you – done facebook,linkedin…have enough confusion in my life already…hope you don’t hate me for saying this…how the heck are you??????

haven’t talked to your mom in two months or so..maybe longer…how’s everyone – steve,your mom??? let me know what you’re up to besides diigo…


  • One of my acquaintances assured me that while I should definitely be completely humiliated, I shouldn’t move to Seattle as I suggested. Just Boston. “This is not a Seattle-Worthy mistake. But Boston, yes.” I found this amusing, even if the T does stop running at Midnight.
  • Eventually, I got over the trauma and was assigned a news story about Afghanistan. “Well that will cheer you up!” My editor noted wryly. “No it will!” I protested. “I mean, I can realize that I actually don’t have problems.” My Good Friend, who was also in the kitchen, offered, “Can you imagine the comedy that would ensue if one member of the Taliban accidently invited all the other members of the Taliban to Diigo?” After a long, hard morning of totally futile and unnecessary panic, I thought it was probably the funniest thing I had ever heard, as did several other people privvy to my plight.
  • At the end of the night, I got an email from my mother. She actually did try to register for Diigo, proving that you can always count on the woman who gave birth to you to be your most diligent and unquestioning advocate.

So, in short, be careful when you sign up for social networking sites. I’m telling all my contacts that the mistake was unavoidable, but it really wasn’t. Also if you, like me and other famous heroines such as Anne of Green Gables, are prone to getting into scrapes, it’s a good idea to make a joke out of it.*

* (Jewish heritage not required, though some training may be necessary.)


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