355: Couple

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Facebook defines relationships. 'Yeah, we would have broken up last night, but the net connection was down.'
Title text: Facebook defines relationships. 'Yeah, we would have broken up last night, but the net connection was down.'


It's hard to know when you are in a relationship in modern times. In olden days, you might fancy a girl, then ask her father if you might court her, and if he granted his permission, you would be a couple. Today, that kind of structure and formality is considered antiquated in most western cultures; as a result, we don't have any of the straightforward cues.

This comic suggests that "making it Facebook official," which means asserting the existence of a romantic relationship on Facebook by setting one's status to "In a relationship," has by 2007 become a way to define when you are a couple. Cueball would like to do it, probably after having sex for the first time with his love interest, to get confidence in his relationship and/or show it off to his friends. Because his love interest isn't so sure about that relationship, or doesn't like to formalize it and prefers to enjoy without thinking too much about it, he suggests a compromise: using the "It's complicated" status instead. And he does so with a phrasing very reminiscent of a formal way to propose to marry someone ("Will you be my wife?").

The title text takes it a step further, suggesting that Facebook has become the only reliable way to know about relationships — even so, without access to Facebook, relationships can't evolve.

When this comic came out in late 2007, Facebook was not even 4 years old, but very popular among young people, who would share their lives in great detail back then. As of 2019, most people are more hesitant about instantly sharing all details of their personal life publicly.[citation needed]


[Cueball and Megan in bed.]
Cueball: So is this it? Are we a couple now?
Megan: I just don't know. I like this. I just... don't know.
Cueball: Well will you be my "it's complicated" on Facebook?

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Worst of all, it precludes people who do not use Facebook (for various reasons) from starting relationships. That is NOT my IP address. Is this a problem with VoiceStream (T-Mobile) customers? 02:27, 20 February 2014 (UTC)

WOW, that comic is seven years old by now and I'm still alive without using it — or Google+ – or ???. I'm just feeling free, no NSA or any other Big Brother. --Dgbrt (talk) 20:45, 22 February 2014 (UTC)

Congrats man :-) but - don't you use a credit card or a phone? - if so then NSA knows it all - in Denmark the tabloid can buy credit card info for about 1000€ a month - or so it would seem at the moment. Of course they only use it to hunt down the royalties to shoot pictures - not to just shoot! ;-) Great and still relevant commic though. Kynde (talk) 20:52, 4 May 2014 (UTC)
Yeah, one of the goofiest kinds of virtue signalling is the passive-aggressive "I don't use Facebook" or "I don't watch TV". —Kazvorpal (talk) 05:18, 10 November 2019 (UTC)