I am deleting Facebook & reviving this Blog. :) Why?

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Anyone who has ever searched online for even just 2 minutes will have quickly found a dozen very good reasons why Facebook is a total shit-show company and social media platform in terms of mining, monetizing, selling and misusing everyone’s data and trampling their privacy. Not to mention their unending duplicitous acts and statements, near monopoly and rapacious money-grubbing. Since this is all so well known and documented I will take it as a given and instead will state a few much more personal, and somewhat less universal, reasons why I am deleting it permanently. After logging into Facebook about 2+ times per day on average for 9! years (since May 2008) I have learned some lessons as well as acquired some very good reasons to now finally leave:

  1. For myself at least, far and away the great majority of the new people I ended up “friended” with, including past acquaintances and former (not so close or estranged) friends I reconnected with through Facebook ended up being unsatisfying, disappointing and especially transient experiences.  In practice this would happen in a few different ways:                  -Almost in every instance we would end up having little to no contact within a few months of friending one another and/or the contact was always a one way street. Which is to say, if I did not initiate contact through FB, I would usually never really hear -anything meaningful- from the person in question. Even if I did try on occasion to get some back and forth going it would fairly quickly peter out.  I would say this was true for 90% of people I ever friended on FB. I have no interest in one way/voyeuristic/fake/very superficial relationships, neither offline, nor online. As for the other and super positive 10%, nearly always these were people that I was very close friends with previously and with which usually both persons put in quite a lot of effort to stay in touch long before we ever added one another on Facebook. We did this using any and all other means of communication such as mail, texts or calls. On those very rare occasions it concerned totally new friends that rapidly became significant it always meant they put in the effort so that we would generally very rapidly move on from FB to much more valuable, less distracting interactions. For instance: spending good times in person together regularly or texting/calling or emailing to really communicate about something meaningful or to set up meetings IRL. This likely concerned 2 persons over all those years. And then there was Anita and Jake, I am very grateful that I managed to find my very first girlfriend and oldest, best friend and that we have always had a great, balanced interaction online since we found one another again. 🙂 Yet now, after deletion of FB we still remain in touch.
  2. The distraction, detraction and time sink of FB is unbelievable. Yes, I have stumbled on a scant few bands, events or links to articles that I really valued but those pale in comparison to the literal weeks of my life that were wasted on utter tripe. Those few truly cool things I could have found much faster and easier on Reddit, or Stressfaktor and in doing so the added bonus would have been getting infinitely more in depth and varied opinions as well as descriptions without the creepy direct, personalized marketing, bad kind of polemics, lowest common denominator flame-wars, extremely slow loading of the bloated FB-site, biggest drain on my mobile battery and many other irritations that seem inherent in big blue..
  3. Starting with my very first posts I was extremely ambivalent and expressed misgivings about FB due to the issues that I name in the first paragraph of this blog post. I hoped being aware of the FB’s dark side would help me mitigate any ill effects. Unfortunately, during those nine years, if anything FB literally became twice or even a few times worse in terms of privacy as well as many other respects. As such, I never felt good about having to rely on Facebook and what that implied for my data, my privacy and maybe even the world, since there are billions of people on FB still.. I didn’t want to be a part of all that any more. It came to a head because:
  4. I became more and more interested in privacy issues, a free and open internet as well as putting my energy, support and money where my mouth is, also I wanted to ensure that I was living and experiencing even more offline. Nobody on their deathbed will ever say “I wish I had spend more time indoors on Facebook”… Additionally I became more and more aware of tons of excellent alternatives that I actually feel great! about using and that add almost solely positive value to my life as well as the world. Really cool privacy orientated email providers that treat staff really well, instant messaging apps that are totally private and work better than Facebook owned Whatsapp, Reddit and a lot more. It is also nice to know I am not alone. In the last 3 years more people I was friended with have deactivated or deleted FB than in the 6 years before that combined..they all report and echo what you can read in tons of studies: people who spend less or even no time on FB are a lot happier, more productive and better off by far, this is almost universally true.
  5. I was in the past afraid I would miss out. And I did (last time was quite a long time ago) on rare occasions benefit some from FB in terms of dating or work or going out or finding out about some event. But I have found many of these things too have really moved away from FB in the last two years & I also realized all the DIY, cheap, left wing events and concerts I truly love and go to the most are almost always easier to find on other platforms and often not at all on FB! The overwhelming majority of the events (generally popular, big, commercial, not cheap) that pop up on FB interest me little and less.
  6. This is certainly a lesser reason, yet the amount of complication, obfuscation, unnecessary stupid changes, additions, illogical user-interface as well as bloat that FB has tacked on over the last few years made the website actually harder, slower and way more painful to use than the -sometimes old- alternatives such as blogs, forums, email, direct messaging apps, Reddit and more. I can’t believe how much FB has dropped the ball on this front, however at this stage I am actually grateful for the extra push this negative aspect has given me and many others to finally jump ship and never look back.
  7. I was scared I would lose all my data, conversations, pictures and dates,.. I did use FB very much like a blog, a photo album and to record what I was doing and thinking on that particular day. Instead I shall  -starting with this post- make sure I use this blog for posting pictures, ideas, rants and podcasts whenever I feel the need. That way any people who actually want to know what I am up to, can have a look anytime they choose. That would be great and I do very much enjoy hearing from people or getting feedback from those that actually care.                I have now also downloaded and carefully backed up all the data that I ever had on FB, that means that right now I would be thrilled if FB permanently deleted all of it from the internet. 🙂 So, I will proceed to make sure of just that. As soon as I have gotten email and direct messaging/phone number details of a few select and really valued people (in order that that I never lose touch!) all of it will be gone. I can’t wait! 🙂 EDIT: 26-09-2017, it has some days since deletion and it feel very good and like the right decision.

Addendum: I do actually believe in: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dunbars_number     and that:

“You are the average of the five people you spend the most time with.”

Though I have in my past generally made acquaintances and temporary friends rather easily at the same time I was more often than not extremely selective about the handful of people I spend the bulk of my time with, my closest friends. As I get older this all seems perhaps even more important to do, not less, i.e.: to maintain great old friendships as well as to be open to interacting positively a little with literally almost anyone new, yet to be really discerning about who I let into my life on a deep level or who I live with or who I love almost unconditionally. Every year or two I add a person, but for one of those amazing people dozens of simply friendly people come, and then go again. By their and/or my choice, not due to misadventure. All of this is a great thing. Life is too short for spending a lot of time or energy on people that are only “ok” friends at best nor to allow Facebook to be among the very few entities you spend the most time with…

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