Hey, I was up all last night and couldn't stop thinking, my ideas are all over the place but I'm interested in what everyone else thinks...the following is just mixed ideas, not a blog post...yet...
Deactivating your facebook account for two weeks doesn't sound like a very long time, but in the facebook world it's a buzzworthy thing. "I clicked on their profile, and it lead nowhere, where had they gone?" said one user (um maybe he wont offline), only to find a few days later the person was back posting as frequent as ever on facebook.
I couldn't understand the reason why people did this. Did they have no willpower to just simply not use facebook instead of deactivating an account (which can easily be reinstated) to stop themselves from continually having thought diahhrea all over the webosphere - not that not having facebook will stop you if you have that problem, you'd need to just get off the internet full stop.
"It's annoying" said a friend of mine. She quit facebook for a mere two days. I couldn't understand what was annoying. So here is my take. I tried it.
There are two sides to every story I believe, pros and cons, peaks and pits, but when I think about facebook there's many shades of grey. I cannot explain that irrational feeling of how good it feels to click 'share' why does that feel good? and why does it piss me off later to feel overly exposed with all my likes and shares, "how does so and so know that, oh yeah because I shared it on facebook". I am losing my value of privacy and yet I feel out of touch when I don't share.
I like to believe that I try for a modicum of privacy - putting on privacy settings as much as I can and yet so much slips through the cracks. Is this because of the biggest lie told by anyoneever committed on the internet - not thoroughly if even scanning through the terms and conditions or is it because I can't keep up with all the changes that keep happening to facebook.
It's starting to remind me of Ben Elton's futuristic novel "Blind Faith", wherein the internet has changed our culture so much we are now forced to share every intimate moment in our lives the birth of our children, our 30th birthdays etc. and while I know we all already do this voluntarily, is facebook making us lazy? Information about each other's lives is getting so easy to access. And this isn't just for our friends but other people too.
I was in hospital for 7 days and inadvertantly it was also an experiment. Those people who truly cared actually knew. They called, they wrote, they talked to my family. I'm being a little unfair, as some very good friends who didn't know live very far away so I understand how they would use facebook to know these things but really do I have to post of facebook "was in hospital" it just feels wrong and sort of exploitive. If I'm true to myself - I'm not even that honest in real life. Most people didn't even know I had an autoimmune disease until I was 18, and I had one since I was 12.
But I digress, there are good things facebook/sharing my life has done for me. It helped me express myself in a ways I didn't know I could before. Keeping a secret like a disease to yourself for so long isn't exactly healthy. It's also connected me with people I would have had no way of finding without. I understand the irrationality behind it all because I feel it too. I know that feeling of yes tag me that we're at the club altogether, I know that rush of omg so many comments. But it all sounds rather silly later doesn't it? Can there be a balance? What do you think?
Once I get thoughts properly together, Blog Title Idea: Why Deactivating my facebook was the best thing I've ever done (and why I reactivated it)
www.IslandMeetsCity.com my blog is offline until Feb 18, going under a revamp and design redo :)
I don't like Facebook very much. Whenever I'm home in the US, I deactivate. When I'm outside of the country, I reactivate, but still rarely post an update, add a photo, share anything, etc. Unfortunately, it's the only way to keep up with people from home when I'm gone. I've tried to email, but I find that people are more inclined to read my email, then respond on Facebook (???). I don't like the idea of self-justification and validity via social media. If someone wants to do something they feel strongly about or wants to share some other conviction, a random slew of "obligated" likes should not make them feel as though they've done something good.
I may just be bitter, though. I usually find out news about deaths, engagements and babies via status update because everyone is in a competition to "share" news from nowhere first. My parents didn't even have time to call me about my grandfather's sudden death because my tactful cousins had to #RIP it because sadness requires likes!
I do think it can be used for good, though! But for a lot of people that's a tall order.
My mom and I were just discussing the sharing-family-news-on-Facebook thing. My mom didn't get a chance to call my older sister until a couple hours after my grandpa died and although she did get in touch with her before she went on Facebook, when my mom did go online, she saw that several of my cousins had already posted status updates about it.
I'm generally not in agreement with most of this post, in that I view Facebook as a thing that's there and convenient and when people don't have it, it's kind of annoying and inconvenient. HOWEVER, I think there's a line and sharing information like that before everyone important had a chance to hear it another way was super shitty. Nobody should have to learn about the death of a grandparent from Facebook.
This is an interesting topic. I deactivated facebook for a few months several years ago, and it was liberating. I knew that for my close friends, I would still keep in touch, and if I had a hard time doing so, was I that close to them to begin with? I enjoyed writing emails back and forth, or sending a quick text. I reactivated because I did find that I missed it a little bit. I missed being involved in the planning stage of an event, rather than finding out about it two days before (usually in a text saying "sorry, forgot you didn't have facebook, we're doing happy hour tomorrow!" or something along those lines). While it is easy for the person who deactivates to try to stay in touch, it's hard for those that are still "on the grid" to keep people who aren't in the loop. I don't think it's done maliciously, it's just hard to remember, when sharing good news via statuses, who isn't online to see them.
I'm not one of those people that shares very personal info via status (my statuses are usually rants about hockey). I don't share family news, good or bad, although other family members do. I dislike the inane status updates that humblebrag (I don't care how far you ran today, sorry), but I did find myself missing the links that my friends would share. Personally, I use twitter to share interesting things I've found online, but for my friends that don't use that service, they share on facebook, and I'm glad to read what they find interesting.
I think there can be a balance. I know a lot of people that have accounts, and really only use them to stay in touch via private messages, or to read their feed. They don't post statuses or photos, they don't use it to share details of their own life, they aren't obsessed with comments or likes. I think that's a happy medium!
Facebook is really just an icon of our time. What I mean is it perfectly depicts where we are heading. I believe in the idea of a Facebook that is used t keep in touch with old and new friends around the world. But the truth is it has gotten out of hand. I didn't use Facebook for almost two years. I did not deactivate it I simply just didn't use it. I was tired of learning things about people via their online profiles. i was tired of signing on and being updated on things I did not care about. There is no reason why people need to post every time they went to the mall or how much they love their boyfriends/girlfriends, it gets ridiculous.
I use Facebook as an outlet for an occasional quip when I am bored, to keep up with family that I have all over the world and for marketing purposes.
Once I got an invitation to a party by a good friend of mine. I did not respond to it because I wasn't using Facebook so i didn't get it. only found out about it after a couple of days went bye I get a message from her saying
" You didn't respond to my invite" I explained that I did not get one.
" I sent it on Facebook."
"Sorry, I don't use Facebook"
" But how will you know anything if you don't use Facebook?"
"Well you are talking to me right now. People who want to get in touch with me know where to find me."
She knew I was right and had no response.
thanks everyone for your comments, great to see what everyone thinks - yeah I feel like a hppay medium is the way to go, I like not being so attached but I like being in the loop too. Great ideas to feed my thoughts while thinking up this blog post. I had so many ideas but nothing really made sense haha. cheers, keep the comments coming :D
The thing about Facebook is, you have to realize it's just Facebook. You can't let it guilt you into accepting everyone and sharing everything. I have a very small group of "Friends," and they are all people that I actually care about. I have a rule where I add people and then delete them if they don't actually connect with me within 6 months (which is MORE than generous). Thanks to my husband's military service, we have friends literally all over the world and it's awesome to still be able to keep track of what's going on in their lives and connect with them so easily. It serves a useful purpose for me.
As far as over-sharing...yeah I'm just not that kind of person. I do think it's wrong to post family information or big news on Facebook first thing (ie pregnancy announcements before you actually tell your family, deaths before everyone knows, etc). It's just a courtesy thing.
My biggest pet peeve is the fact that thanks to social media and the internet, everyone thinks they are involved with EVERYTHING. Oh, there was an earthquake halfway across the world in a country I've never visited or met anyone from? Let me post how heartbroken I am about people I don't know! Because clearly they care.