5 reasons to be friends with your mom on Facebook
This Mother’s Day, give the gift of not rolling your eyes every time she comments on your photos. More than 27 million women identify as mothers on Facebook and they are all very, very proud of you. Here are five reasons you should be friends with your mom on the Internet.
1. You never call
Terrisita Grant volunteers at a clinic in the Dominican Republic, where she moved two years ago. Her daughter, Julia, is getting married in Windsor, Ontario.
Both of them are very busy.
“She doesn’t have time to sit down and chat with me on the phone for an hour, but Facebook lets us connect for a few moments every week,” Grant told NBC News.
To be clear, you should still call your mother, but she might be more understanding if you posted a friendly “Hello!” on her Wall every once in awhile.
2. It's cheaper than a plane ticket
The older you get, the farther from your mother you probably live, according to the Facebook Data Science team.
It takes a lot of effort to get on a plane, less effort to pick up the phone, and basically no effort at all to click “Like.”
3. She’s not like a regular mom, she’s a cool mom
Moms know how to do stuff now. Like use iPhones and share things on Instagram. Susan LaPoint just happens to be a social media strategist in Salt Lake City, Utah, who communicates with her teens and college-aged son with Facebook. In fact, she encourages them to use social media now because she knows they might need those skills to land a job in the future.
She also has some serious tagging skills.
“We’re a pretty social family,” she told NBC News. “When we go out and we all have our phones, it’s like, “Who is going to share the photo that we take?”
4. She's worried about you
Moms worry ... a lot. Even if they want to pick up the phone, they know you have to do things like sleep and go to work.
"I like hearing your voice, but I also sometimes want to say something at 5 a.m.," Imelda, a retired school teacher and my mother, told me from California. "I like the messaging part, because I can do it while you guys are busy."
5. Your mother wants to know about your life
For parents, getting information out of teens is nearly impossible. The CIA probably has an easier time prying state secrets from foreign governments.
“I think there would be a lot of things that I wouldn’t know without Facebook,” LaPoint said. “My teenagers might not be as willing to say, ‘Hey I made a friend,’ or ‘These people were at this party.’ It keeps me more up-to-date on their social life.”
This applies to adults as well.
"I like seeing the pictures that you and your friends post," Imelda said. "Some are funny and some are a little bit weird."
"Wait, which ones are are weird?" I asked.
She replied, "Oh my gosh, this is awkward for you!"
Yes, mothers are occasionally embarrassing, both on Facebook and off it. But give them a break. It's Mother's Day.
Keith Wagstaff writes about technology for NBC News. He previously covered technology for TIME's Techland and wrote about politics as a staff writer at TheWeek.com. You can follow him on Twitter at @kwagstaff and reach him by email at: Keith.Wagstaff@nbcuni.com