In essence, Facebook takes the question of Auld Lang Syne--should old acquaintance be forgot, and never brought to mind?--and answers, no. With Facebook, no old acquaintance can be forgot, and that is its strength. No matter what, you can log on and see people you haven't spoken to in years in a closeness that no other generation has ever known. We are more connected than anyone in any other time could conceive of. But I've come to realize that all that connection has come at the cost of the old types of connection that I used to depend on so much. My life used to be punctuated by daily phone calls and emails to people far away and close, but I've noticed that I just don't do that anymore.
I've not forgotten any acquaintance, but I've forgotten what made me love them in the first place: communication. I know all communication is mediated by forces beyond our control--media, money, advertising, literacy, etc--but there is something about the way Facebook mediates communication that makes me feel like it actually drives us apart more than it connects us. I'm not sure exactly what that factor is, but I think it is the way Facebook makes you feel like you are on display. Sure, Twitter and Instagram are displays too, but they are not set up to be a person's only communication with their peers like Facebook is. When I go on Facebook to communicate with someone, I automatically feel like I am on display for the whole world, which impresses too much negative energy on my thoughts and ability to communicate them.
So, I am going back somewhat to the days when I walked around all day wondering what my people were up to, and, if the wondering started to burn too much, I would call them or email them. I wouldn't passively observe them over Facebook and know everything they were doing but not engage in meaningful discourse with them. I had a lot of meaningful connection over Facebook, but most of it wasn't.
To answer the old question for myself:
Should old acquaintances be forgot? Yes, but when they are brought to mind, you should reach out to them.
Goodbye Facebook "friends." Hope we communicate soon.