When you browse through your Facebook feed and see people’s profile pictures, you’re probably making assumptions on the people you see based on their profile pictures. At the same time, people who see your profile pictures are also making assumptions about you: your personality, style, temperament; even your values.
Wouldn’t you love to know what kind of impressions people form on you on Facebook? In order to do that, you need to think a little like an anthropologist. Think of Facebook as a jungle, and about the people who inhabit it as ‘animals.’ Those animals’ behaviors are motivated by different needs: finding a mate, showing your physical strength, proving your superiority, finding food (money), and mimicking other animals in order to blend in better with the environment. Just like animals, the way we humans behave also rests on our different needs and interests. To demonstrate this point, we bring you five distinct types of Facebook profile pics and the jungle rationale behind them.
Want to see where you fit in? Read on:
The Jokers (Jungle Law: Don’t Eat Me, I’m Harmless)
You know the type – they’re happy to play the village fool and never take anything too seriously. Their profile pic will either depict them using an object (pencil, spoon, carrot stick) as a mustache, striking an exaggerated pose or repeating a popular meme. There’s no harm in being a joker on Facebook, just as long as you set your privacy options to avoid embarrassing situations with your boss or your future dates.
The Professional Networkers (Jungle Law: I Need to Hunt My Own Food)
He or she are constantly promoting themselves or their services. They’re not on Facebook to make friends or have fun, they are on the clock – working hard to make new connections and seek opportunities. They use a headshot that was probably taken by a professional as their profile pic. Whether by putting on a friendly smile or a smart expression, their photo shows them as someone you want to have on your team at work.
The Proud Parents (Jungle Law: Reproduce or Become Extinct)
This type is not very hard to miss. In addition to the profile picture, 99% of the posts they publish are dedicated to the object of their pride. Let’s be clear, we’re not just talking about babies here. On Facebook, people can be obsessed with posting photos of their cats, dogs and guinea pigs too. Their profile pic will present them with their bundle of joy, or in extreme cases, just the bundle.
The Bashfuls (Jungle Law: If They Can’t See Me, They Can’t Get Me)
Believe it or not, not everyone on Facebook is comfortable with the concept of showing off their private lives. That doesn’t mean that they can’t enjoy social media like the rest of us exhibitionists. A shy Facebook user will usually have a a cute but impersonal illustration or often times, a long shot of themselves in a deserted environment with their backs to the camera. Warning! Chronic shyness may lead to sticking with the default Facebook blurb as a profile pic.
The Artists (Jungle Law: Use Colors to Attract Attention)
These people are creative, unique and talented, and their profile picture is all that and more. Artists may use their own works as profile pics, a work of someone they admire or possibly a photo documenting their creative process. These people will stand out in your newsfeed with an original profile picture (not very hard considering the four other types we just listed). If they’re really good, you would want to check out their full profile and see how the profile pic harmoniously joins the cover photo to create a complete work of art.
Did we miss you or someone you know? Tell us about your profile pic and what it says about you!