College Survival Guide: How to Stalk New York’s Creative Underground… on Facebook

Written by NY Press on . Posted in Posts.

Hate to say it, but if your Facebook account is nothing but the proverbial graveyard of your past, you’re totally missing the point. A large contingent of the city’s most creative enterprises in art, music, food and nightlife have migrated to Facebook to send event invites, party locations and calls for volunteers. So if you’re looking for the subsequent bragging rights—the joyful wall posts, the event pics, the flurry of friending activity—here are a few party pointers.


Start with a writer’s trick: See or hear something that catches your eye? Jot it down in whatever way suits your fancy (if you’re an iPhone user you’re one step ahead). See some homegrown party poster stapled to a telephone pole in Williamsburg? Jot it down. A passing mention of some event or some venue in a story in one of your favorite local reads? Jot it down. That DJ at that place your friend mentioned the other day that sounded cool but now you can’t remember it? Yeah, should have jotted it down.

A quick search on Facebook will most likely reveal that the thing that caught your attention has a presence here: a fan page you can “like” or a group you can join to get its updates and party invites.  


I’ll be the first to admit that scanning Facebook’s newsfeed, I’ve seen that a friend is attending such-and-such party—and totally poached it. In fact, I openly encourage any of my Facebook friends to do the same. The trick here is to ask yourself these three questions: What’s the status between me and said Facebook friend that’s attending? Ditto for event admin? And, finally, is the event more public than private/personal? As long as you’re in either good or neutral standing with friend and admin, and the party’s public-skewed, jump on board.  

Which means when you see that a high school Mean Girl is attending your estranged former roommate’s 20th birthday party at the Rivington Hotel penthouse… yeah, no. Maybe you should have patched things up.


This doesn’t mean you have to accept that lingering friend request from some random dude you met outside Avenue. On the other hand, if you’re out in the wilds of the city’s vibrant social and cultural scene and you end up chatting with someone and you hit it off—they’re easy to talk to, seem like they’re involved in some cool shit—proactively get his name and ask if you can Facebook Friend him. It’s not creepy, and it doesn’t mean you’re hitting on them (well, maybe a little of both). New Facebook friends should be the people you’d like to run into again, you know, at an event or walking down the street in the ’hood. Trust me, it’ll surprise you how often you do see them again.