So you’re thumbing through Facebook, checking out your Friend’s walls and you run across a strange message. Although you don’t really understand what your buddy is talking about, you get the distinct feeling that he is aiming his verbal barbs in a particular direction. This is called the Cryptic Facebook Status. It’s a highly popular tactic for those who celebrate their passive-aggressive nature. But there are some rules involved. To guarantee that your cryptic message yields its anticipated results, you should take note of the following:
Intended “target” must be an active Facebook Friend.
If you’re trying to make a point with a cryptic Facebook status, then the person you’re hoping will “kick rocks”, must be a subscriber to your feeds. The same rationale applies if you’re simply trying to show off about something; you can’t make frenemies jealous about your hot news unless you know they actually care enough to keep up with you on Facebook. Do your homework to ensure that your thinly veiled message gets the point across.
Timing is key.
If you’re attempting to take a jab at someone following a heated argument, be certain to post your cryptic Facebook note immediately after the fight. By the time your nemesis logs in and sees your status, you’ll have amassed dozens of comments from people who will instantly take your side.
A follow-up cryptic message isn’t necessary, but highly recommended.
Let’s just say that you’re a shameless attention-seeker, and you’re trying to induce interest in your not-so-exciting life. Simply follow up the initial cryptic message (that received no comments) with yet another mysterious memo. Make sure that the follow-up contains a stern and foreboding tone, or at least the hint of something semi-scandalous; people respond to personal misfortune.
Say it with a quote.
When your brain is stumped, and you don’t know how to get your “coded” message across, say it with a quote. Celebrities do it all the time. If you really want to get deep, make sure you quote a famous philosopher, or a person who’s won some sort of international Prize. Pulitzer, Nobel Peace Prize—whatever. The more famous the quote, the better your cryptic message will be received.
Say it with pics…at your own risk.
Some of the best enigmatic Facebook messages have an accompanying photo. This might seem like a fantastic way to punctuate whatever it is you need to say. But beware. Photos have a way of backfiring, for they often reveal things that we didn’t intend to disclose. Where we are, who we’re with, what we’re doing—are documented in photos in different ways. So if you don’t want random nosy people in your business, you might want to leave pics out of it.
Message must be thinly veiled.
One of the fabulous things about Facebook is that your status can be as vague as you like. As such, feel free to use it to take a stab at someone who’s done you dirty. Just one thing—make sure you’re vague enough to cause a bit of confusion. For example, if you’re trying to get back at an ex, don’t change your Relationship Status; that’s way too blatant. Instead, post a message that could be mildly suggestive, and put a million smiley faces behind it. Yeah, it’s juvenile. But after all, you are spending 11 hours a day on Facebook.
(Disclaimer: Author of this article assumes no responsibility for acts of retaliation for any cryptic Facebook communication. Said acts may or not include cyber-bullying, house-egging, name calling, inappropriate photo-tagging, or profile Blocking.)