This week, Selena Gomez staged the ultimate friend-cleanse. It began with unfollowing everyone (no really - everyone) she’d previously connected with on Instagram, and subsequently erasing all evidence that Kylie and Kendall Jenner ever existed on her profile, or in her life. And it didn’t stop there. Her serial unfriending turned to Twitter, where it continued in full force. For god’s sake, she even unfollowed Taylor Swift.
All innocent enough in context of our hyper-connected online lives? Because who cares if you have a cull - will anyone even notice? - and it’s not like you’re unfriending them in real life, right? But, as harmless as it may seem to casually click that button, new research says it might have
Two studies this week revealed that there is intense emotional fallout at the loss of an online friendship - everything from surprise to sadness. But really, is there any need for callous, for-the-sake-of-it culling? It doesn’t really take much to maintain an online friendship - actually, it takes no effort at all. So could we step off the passive aggression wagon and avoid the Unfollow Sorrow?