PARIS — Wendy Christensen (COL ’16) had been anticipating what many consider the most important moment of studying abroad at the Sorbonne ever since she submitted her application last spring: a new profile picture.
She arrived in Paris, France one week ago, moved into her new dorm and purchased her first gluten-free croissant.
“I seriously can’t even,” Christensen told the Heckler upon arrival, “you don’t even understand, I’m like fully immersed in it at this point. I am Parisian down to the last beret.”
In the midst of this emotionally and spiritually fulfilling week for Christensen, last Friday, a shocking turn of events occurred.
At 8:34 EST, a time generally regarded by self-proclaimed social media marketers as “peak hours,” Christensen uploaded a new profile picture from her Canon Rebel t5i of herself drinking an espresso in front of the Eiffel Tower wearing a circle scarf, a new leather jacket, and high-waisted jeans. Facebook friends described her hair as “blowing back in a light wind and her head slightly turned away.”
When Christensen awoke the next morning to check her “noties”, however, she received a startlingly lack of social media validation. In 15 hours, she had received only 42 likes and one comment. The singular comment, from Janet Christensen-Reed, her aunt, read “looks a little windy where you are, be sure to wear an extra coat and pet a French bulldog for me. Talked to your dad yesterday and we are thinking of you here. Bonjour”
Christensen, on the surface, appeared to have done everything right. She executed the X-Pro II filter with blur around the edges and even captioned it “Toto, I have a feeling we’re not in Kansas anymore #SoAbroad”, a timeless reference combined with what appeared to be an appropriate hashtag.
Christensen’s close friends and family reported to be “at a loss” over the lack of online warmth from the social media community.
“I don’t understand. The hours between 8pm and 10pm tend to be the best time to maximize on likes among university students, especially on weekends,” says marketing major Kyle Johnston(MSB ’17) and friend of Christensen. “This is the time just after dinner and right before pregaming when students are checking their Facebook messages or seeing if their ‘bae’ has posted a status regarding where they will be heading that night”.
The Georgetown Office of International Programs (“OIP”) was immediately notified of the unfortunate occurrence and refused to comment, but the Heckler received inside information that Christensen has been declared “not even abroad” and will not be receiving credit for the upcoming semester.
Statistics released by the OIP reported that the average Georgetown student will receive 147 likes on their first study abroad profile picture and 57 on their first study abroad cover photo. The usage of the corresponding foreign language in the caption is proven to increase likes by 24% while the use of “#NoFilter” when a filter was indeed used will provoke an average of 1 snarky comment per 18 hours.
While major and “common” monuments such as the Leaning Tower of Pisa, Colosseum, and the Eiffel Tower have been declining in popularity over such places as Table Mountain, Kasbah des Oudaias, or any major mountain range, Christensen’s measly 42 likes still places her in the bottom 34 percentile of study abroadee likes.
It is unconfirmed as to whether or not Christensen will attempt to redeem herself with a new profile picture but sources tell the Heckler that the picture in question has been removed and replaced with the former picture of her and her best friend on the front lawn during Georgetown day with matching bulldog tattoos on their cheeks.