“Maybe” I’ll Come, “Maybe” I Won’t – Facebook, Get Rid of That Damn ‘Maybe’ Response!

“Maybe” I’ll Come, “Maybe” I Won’t – Facebook, Get Rid of That Damn ‘Maybe’ Response!

InQuire’s Website Comment Editor, David Cocozza, gives his opinion on fence sitting and the ‘Maybe’ reply.

Simply put, I dislike the ‘Maybe’ response to a Facebook event invite.

Picture this – you create an event, invite 60 of your closest friends to it and you hope maybe 20 of them click attending (you don’t want to be too optimistic, because as a student our lives are just oh so busy…). But, suddenly, not one, not two, but SEVEN people have clicked… “Maybe”. Am I the only person whose blood begins to boil?

I have to confess, I’ve done it before. I’ve clicked ‘Yes’, and forgot about it. I’ve clicked a ‘maybe’, and not gone. And I’m trying my best not to do it, but when that button is just sitting right here in the middle…it can be oh so tempting.

Facebook seems to have changed the way we RSVP to an event – thanks to the decline of paper RSVPs, gone are the days of a simple clear-cut “Yes” or “No”, but the introduction of a sketchy middle ground that says, “I might come, but only if I can’t find anything better to do…or if I can be bothered.” It stings. Hard. In fact, the rise of the ‘Maybe’ response has meant that even the simple ‘Yes’ can now sometimes be translated as ‘Probably’.

I remember the time just before Facebook became popular and if you couldn’t make it to an event, a simple courtesy email or message wouldn’t go amiss. Today, you can just click ‘maybe’ so that you don’t offend the organiser, in the full knowledge you will NEVER go, then blame it on a mistake and that you ‘forgot’ to attend. Simply put, it can be translated as a bit rude. The event organisers are planning an event for you, and to give them a ‘maybe’ just simply translates as “I don’t really care either way, to be honest”.

Whilst laziness is part of the problem, there is another side of things: poor time management. Everything that I commit to, I always put in the diary on my Outlook calendar– it can tell me straight away if I have a clash, instead of saying “maybe” and then check later. It also goes straight to my phone and I can access it and update it anywhere. Very good. Sitting on the fence is one thing, but clicking “Yes” to everything is also another dangerous. You run the risk of nobody ever believing you’ll turn up to things, and perhaps accidentally offending someone.

I want my loved ones to jump with joy at my invites, of course. And if they don’t give me a definitive answer, I’m not really free to make other plans. But I also can’t help feeling a little rejected. It’s only natural…and I’m sure the feeling is felt by most people.

Don’t fall into the easy trap of answering “Maybe”. It’s a total cop-out. If you are truly unsure, wait until you have an answer then respond. If you must decline, then acknowledge it, but TELL THE ORGANISER!

Try to say “Yes”, only when you actually mean “Yes” – and perhaps the long-gone traditions of effective RSVPs might start returning.


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