Minn. man attempts to meet all Facebook friends face-to-face - FOX13 News, WHBQ FOX 13

Minn. man attempts to meet all Facebook friends face-to-face

Posted: Updated:

When a friend request is accepted on Facebook, does it really mean two people are friends? One Minnesota man says yes, and he is going out of his way to meet every person on his friend's list.

Mikel McLaughlin is a St. Thomas law graduate who just passed the Minnesota bar exam -- but before he gets a real job, he wanted to go on a journey. So far, McLaughlin says he's been pleasantly surprised by how a simple gesture of wanting to enhance a friendship on Facebook can go a long way.

With more than a billion users, the social-networking behemoth continues to be integral part of many people's lives. Old and new friends alike are just a click away.

"I had 302 [Facebook friends] when I started this," McLaughlin told Fox 9 News.

The 35-year-old's social experiment involves testing the strength of those online bonds by asking people to sit down with him in person.

"I'm going for quality over quantity," he explained. "I want quality time with people."

In the process, he hoped he'd also find some meaning.

"I don’t know what everybody's meaning is, but I'm trying to figure out what mine is," he said.

For the past month, McLaughlin has crisscrossed the West Coast, reconnecting with Facebook friends he hasn't seen in years.

"One friend took me to Yellowstone National Park for the first time," he said.

For some of his Facebook friends, it was the first time they'd met in real life.

"I got to do a ride-along with a police officer, and that's someone that I've never met," McLaughlin said.

Each encounter ends up on McLaughlin's blog, but he's not on the journey alone. In Bloomington, his wife, Sage, handles all the tech support and she said this experience has enhanced their relationship.

"If this is something he wants to do and it's going to make him happy, then it's only going to make me happy," Sage McLaughlin told Fox 9 News.

Which may be why, in the midst of writing about all his friends, Michael McLaughlin decided to write about his best friend on Day 31 of his experiment after realizing that distance can make a heart grow fonder.

"I just thought, 'Huh, I couldn't be married to anyone any better," he said.

With hundreds of sit-downs in random coffee shops and restaurants still left to complete, he's already planning his next meeting -- and may even make some more Facebook friends.

MORE: We're friends, right?

  • Most Popular StoriesMost Popular StoriesMore>>

  • VIDEO: 'Spoiled' baby deer just wants belly rubs

    VIDEO: 'Spoiled' baby deer just wants belly rubs

    Friday, August 1 2014 4:30 PM EDT2014-08-01 20:30:20 GMT
    A tree trimming crew picked up a baby deer to move it to a safe location, but it just wanted to stay in the arms of a worker.
    A tree trimming crew picked up a baby deer to move it to a safe location, but it just wanted to stay in the arms of a worker.
  • PHOTOS: In memory of Mendota Heights Officer Scott Patrick

    PHOTOS: In memory of Mendota Heights Officer Scott Patrick

    Thursday, July 31 2014 3:48 PM EDT2014-07-31 19:48:12 GMT
    Paramedics gathered early Thursday morningParamedics gathered early Thursday morning
    Hundreds of family members, friends and members of the Mendota Heights community continued to gather Thursday to honor Officer Scott Patrick, the first in the department to die in the line of duty.
    Hundreds of family members, friends and members of the Mendota Heights community continued to gather Thursday to honor Officer Scott Patrick, the first in the department to die in the line of duty.
  • Mendota Heights cop killer charged: 'I hate cops and I'm guilty'

    Mendota Heights cop killer charged

    Friday, August 1 2014 4:20 PM EDT2014-08-01 20:20:05 GMT

    Criminal charges against Brian Fitch in the shooting death of Mendota Heights Police Officer Scott Patrick will be announced at a 2 p.m. news conference with prosecutors from Dakota County and Ramsey County.

    Criminal charges against Brian Fitch in the shooting death of Mendota Heights Police Officer Scott Patrick will be announced at a 2 p.m. news conference with prosecutors from Dakota County and Ramsey County.


Widgets Magazine
Powered by WorldNow

WHBQ-TV | Fox 13
485 S. Highland St.
Memphis, TN 38111

Main Station: (901) 320-1313
Newsroom: (901) 320-1340

Didn't find what you were looking for?
All content © Copyright 2000 - 2014 Fox Television Stations, Inc. and Worldnow. All Rights Reserved.
Privacy Policy | New Terms of Service What's new | Ad Choices