I know this has been a vexed question elsewhere and I ( CERTAINLY do not like "friend" to be abused - a friend is a powerful connection far more than a working or playful acquaintance on a forum of a few days or weeks only. See I'm not a follower type - and scuse me but for some women this is a bit touchy. We still have to combat widespread assumptions about female = follower. As a leadership personality I also discourage followers. I work a lot to strengthen others and work collaboratively as far as poss. Also again as a woman 'follower' as quite unwelcome interpretations. From an unwanted interest all the way to stalking. So I don't like it either way round. Erm - companion?or some variation of link/ bridge ... Maybe I don't understand what it does but it's just linking me with the other person? and whether folower or followed is just who initiated it?