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07/24/2015

Brazil Truths: the look of a British tourist

Brazil Truths – “add me on facebook?: British reports surprise with ‘instant friends of Brazil” is the headline of news portals and social networks in Brazil.

Adam Smith is studying Portuguese and German at Oxford Department of Modern Languages (BBC Brazil)

Adam Smith spent six months in brazilians land.

In Brazil, I received unexpected almost instantaneous invitations to dinners, car trips and even overnight stays in homes. But what really surprised me was how easily i made virtual friends”. 

In Brazil, it is very easy to make a new friend or receive a dinner invitation from someone you just met. And the Facebook culture seems not only reflect but also to take this extreme openness of Brazilians to an even higher level.

It was not uncommon in Brazil, after a first conversation a few minutes, someone say, “add me on facebook? “. It was something that, for me, with a British head, would only make sense if, in fact , if there was a real intention to contact the person. It would not be the case of a relationship a few minutes in which not even the name of the “new friend” had been stored. I have friends on Facebook with whom I do not speak for a long time, but I got the impression that, in Brazil, is more common to connect with people you do not even do not know.

Once, I was stopped in the street by someone who i had never seen. He told me that a friend of his had seen several times a guy who, according to his friend’s description, looked like me. After two minutes of an embarrassing (and surreal) conversation, the guy asked me to add it on Facebook. He stopped me on the street, citing a confusing description of a friend and wanted to add me on Face! I was astonished. Something like that would never happen in London.

These are aspects of everyday life that make you think about your culture, your creation. In London , people are often cold and closed. Or look for others in the subway. There is no spontaneous conversation in public transport , as had so often in São Paulo, for example.

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