For many people life goes on within a complex media ecology. Within this ecology social media have become a dominant genus and Facebook the dominant species. Facebook’s massive population, third to India and China, makes it a significant global phenomenon with deep-reaching social and cultural effects. Consequently, Facebook has fallen under the microscope of social scientists from numerous disciplines and generated a rich body of political, economic, legal, psychological, sociological, anthropological and technological insights. These construct Facebook in different ways, and this suggests that Facebook is not one ‘thing’. Rather, it is an assemblage of protocols, software, interfaces, media, content, contracts, marketing, public relations, surveillance systems, bureaucracies, shareholders, users and global and local cultures — the list goes on. I am concerned with one ‘field’ within this arabesque: Facebook’s influence on everyday social relationships and identities. Facebook is having a significant effect on these phenomena which, I argue, can be theorised in terms of intimacy.
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