Make new friends by renting them

The definition of "friend" has been watered down a bit with the advent of online social networking. It seems that now, your friend might be someone with whom you've never met, even someone with whom you've never communicated, with the exception of a simple button click on a website. This can be a good way to meet people, but it's a bit weird to call a person a friend when it's quite possible the individual on the other side could be an enemy, a fish or a hat.

Enter RentAFriend.com, a site full of people who are waiting to be your friends! Well, there is a bit of a catch. To find friends, it will cost you $24.95 to sign up. And most "friends" on the site charge anywhere from $10-150 per hour for services, which could be anything from sightseeing, going to a movie or anything else (just to be certain, the site notes that "RentAFriend.com is NOT a dating website, and NOT an Escort agency. Services for RentAFriend.com are strictly for FRIENDSHIP purposes only." Maybe we also need to revisit the definition of "escort" as well).

This is a slightly more interesting than a blank website. With Facebook, MySpace and thousands of other free social networking websites out there, not to mention Craigslist, which also has these capabilities for free, I suspect RentAFriend.com won't survive for long. Even still, there could be benefits of using a service like this, especially if you have just moved to a new town.

Then again, why not just talk to the first person, enemy, fish or hat you see and make friends that way?

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