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Wednesday, 8 April 2009

Facebook Suicide

I'm sure you've heard it before. The bitter, jaded rants from those who have tried facebook - or those who haven't, and don't intend to, thankyouverymuch. I'm sure my reasons for tearing down the wall are common to many others, but nonetheless I thought I'd share the reasons why I jumped on the noncomformist bandwagon.*

  1. It is just like myspace. No, don't protest. I know you've turned 18 now, and thus rejected the colourful background and musical / glittery baggage of MySpace or (heaven help us) Bebo, but it's the old game in a new dress.**
  2. The temptation to go facebook-stalking proved to be just too much for me sometimes. As the old saying goes, "What has been seen cannot be unseen" - and now that includes seeing my good friends in wedding gowns and fairy dresses, which might have been less aberrant had they bothered to shave the beards off.
  3. The useless apps drive me to distraction! I know the worst facebook plagues - the zombies, pirates, vampires - have passed. I am no longer asked why I'm "walking everywhere on facebook," which let me tell you is a blessed relief because it made ABSOLUTELY NO BLEEDIN' SENSE. But every day there's a new quiz to ascertain which member of the Hungarian royal family I am. Or someone sends me seeds to start my own facebook cabbage patch. Or I'm invited to a group proposing that we enforce old ladies to wear green hats. NO, NO, and NO.
  4. My 'friends' are not my friends. Some of them never spoke to me once at school. Some of them, I honestly don't remember at all, leading to much embarrassment on my part when I give the 'how do you know this person' details a try. I considered going through and deleting the not-really-friends one by one, but I didn't want to hurt anyone's feelings, and quite honestly my friend-friends can contact me anyway.
  5. In fact, anyone can contact me anyway, given a bit of effort. If they can't be bothered to put the effort in, maybe I'm not that fussed about seeing them! Think of it like a captcha requirement on a blog post. It cuts down the noise-to-signal ratio.
  6. I miss getting emails. Don't you miss getting emails? Not subscriptions, or spam mail, or notifications, but honest to goodness emails from a person who wants to say things to you. Those were the days...
  7. Privacy concerns. Amidst all the hubbub about the Government storing and accessing my information, it seems like as good a time as any to bow out. So that's what I've done.
Has anyone else killed off a social networking profile? I recently put a bullet in my myspace, and I let bebo drift into the dark long ago, but facebook was the hardest cord to cut by a long shot.

*Oxymoron? WHY YES!
**Mixing metaphors for your pleasure.


  1. I for one hate facebook but I still have it because there are people on there that don't have a myspace. Yes I like my myspace. People and by that I mean my friends, learn more about me from my myspace. Since my blog is private to them, myspace is the only place people can get to know the real me.

  2. Hmm. Yes I do agree with you about most of it. I have been wanting to bow out of facebook myself. I would add another component to object and that would be how much bleeding time you waste on Facebook, doing not much of anything. Alas, I have not been able to cut the cord yet, but I am working up to it.

  3. I like facebook. It's a convenient tool; I found most of my schoolmates on it. There are ways to make yourself invisible so people can't add you at random as a friend. Nobody is forcing you to use all the applications, you just have to click "no." I like receiving emails but replying is a pain. When I use facebook, everyone sees it at the same time, so I don't have to type the same thing a million times. I also travel a lot and meet many people; by connecting with them on facebook I don't have to email them all the time and I can still easily get in touch with them when I visit their country; so can they.

    Facebook is neither good or bad, it's what you make of it that changes its nature.

  4. Haha man. I used to be a gigantic social network hater in general, and then I shed my halo, because in my world, I need to actually contact my non-friends sometimes, and so instead of hunting around for their phone number, BADABING! I Facebook them.
    And I use my privacy tools to their utmost advantage; I am completely unsearchable. I only add people. Of course, when I meet someone who's also a privacy nazi, well, we have to work something out, but it's still good.
    Oh, COME ON--I'm Facebook friends with 12-year-olds and I hardly get those invitations anymore. Granted, I'm the one who used to send them out every second and remind everyone why not to spam anymore... *hides in deep hole*
    But I totally understand. I remember when I first heard of Facebook, I thought it was the most self-violating thing ever: you post your first and last name all over the place, AND you voluntarily share your every picture with everyone?! For SHAME! I mean, I've heard of and seen pictures of so many people I don't know that when I do see them in public I feel like they're celebrities, to be honest.
    Facebook is WEIRD.
    And if I didn't have friends because of it (sue me), well... who knows.

  5. I partially agree with your comments. My facebook is locked down so that people cannot see anything without me acknowledging them as a friend and only friends of friends can find me without an email address. My main bone of contention is how addictive it can be, but that is down to the individual user to be strong willed enough not to let that happen! I like the way you can now totally block those annoying applications which you keep getting requests for and trim what is emailed to you down to only the things YOU care about. I also note that it seems to be one of the main methods of contact for several of the groups I help out with, most notably IWYFC make use of it and it's the only way minutes from Catalyst Planning meetings are sent out. On the whole I believe it reflects human nature like nothing else, there are those who use it for good, those who use it for bad and those who just talk a complete load of tripe!

    Anywho, enough waffling.

  6. Well done! I can't bring myself to delete FB... I love it too much. After months of threatening to commit Facebook Suicide, the other day I finally admitted to myself that I like it, and that there are friends who I wouldn't be in touch with now if it weren't for FB, and that this is a good thing.
    About a week ago though, I did delete my Twitter account. It was a waste of time and there's only so many twitterphants you can take (@stephenfry please pay meeeee attention nnoooowwwwwww). I do miss Stephen Fry though.

  7. I have been on and off of myspace too many times to count. Then I switched to facebook. Everytime I tried to deactivate my facebook account I would go right back because when you log in as usual all your stuff is still there. So I eventually deleted all my friends, and pics and wall post because I knew I wouldn't feel like making my page up again.

  8. I have got rid of myspace and bebo (at least i think i have, they might still be there but i'm never on them) but i love facebook! it's easier to organise group things, talk to my international friends, and i quite like some of the applications.

    i'm good at ignoring it whilst writing essays (for the most part anyway) so it doesnt serve at a distraction.
    i'll admit i'm prone to a little bit of facebook stalking. but mostly i love facebook because alot of my uni class are on it and when it's the day before our assignments are due in and i'm panicking about where to find a reference for can guarentee there are at least 5 other people on facebook panicking about something similar and we can all help each other out.

    i recently got twitter but am not convinced.
    facebook is the one i love...but if you don't get anything good out of it then i think you were right to commit facebook suicide :)

    those are my thoughts! xx

  9. I just got rid of my myspace mostly for the same reason as no.4 on your list. I mainly had the account to keep in contact with my boyfriend anyway but msn, skype and email are so much better to communicate through and i found i didnt use it much so "poof!" I don't think create another account on facebook or anything.

  10. I'm still relatively new to Facebook, but I have found some of it useful. I can keep up with my best friend who moved to Florida: pictures, what she's doing for the weekend, etc. But then I get friend requests and I don't even know them. So I just ignore them. At some point I can see this going the way of the dinosaur - but for now I'm enjoying it.

  11. There have been many times over the past couple of years that I've wanted to bin Facebook and many times that I've been so addicted to it that I've had the page open all day and refreshed it every couple of minutes. I'm relieved to say that I think my love affair with FB is finally over (something to do with the new format possibly). I don't think I'll bin it completely (still like to check out photos of old boyfriends), but at least it won't be the first thing I switch on when I wake up.

  12. I've REALLY been wanting to delete my facebook. I, too, have a problem with facebook stalking from time to time, but it's all just so ridiculous. The only reason I am keeping it (for now) is to really stay in touch with friends in other parts of the country. And yeah, why do random people that have never spoken to you, and never will speak to you, just add you? Geez.

  13. Hi, just found your blog ... very enjoyable!

    Just ditched facebook, and when I found myself staring at my screen after checking my emails over breakfast, feeling like there was something missing, I realized what a damn good move it was to get rid of it!

  14. Oh, I'm impressed! I've thought about leaving Facebook - especially when I've seen things that I really didn't want to. However I do keep in touch with my uni friends and some of my family through it...

    I did however delete my Myspace and Bebo pages after reading this - I never used them anyway... (not even sure why I had Bebo?!)

    I also took all the annoying people off Twitter (including philip scofield - gasp!)

  15. I could NEVER give up FB; I am addicted to it. Must confess, I take the little quizes; they make me giggle.

    I found your blog quite by accident; I enjoy it.

  16. Very mixed reactions! Don't worry, I'm not saying everyone should delete Facebook. It's a great way to stay in touch with old friends, and I think I probably will reactivate mine some day. But for now, the annoyances outweigh the benefits, for me.

  17. I object to the comment about your bearded friends in dresses. We looked lovely. Well, I looked lovely.

    Besides, Facebook is the fastest possible way to find out if a young lady is single, and for that reason it will always be an absolute essential.

  18. True, but that's unlikely to be of much use to me... and I'm sorry, of course you looked lovely.

  19. So they say I'm a social butterfly and that is the reason I can't let go of my facebook. Although I do agree with you and you have a lot of good points some of us just find it easier to have it all right there.

  20. I prefer Twitter. Facebook doesn't do it for me.

  21. The main concern i have with facebook is the data storage you mentioned. Otherwise its an easy way to stay in touch. I don't add any of the applications, i can't be search publicly i check it when I get an email telling me I have a msg. People who add me through my friends i ignore.

  22. I like facebook mostly because all of my friends, especially my college friends are on there. My myspace page gets hit by some WEIRD and FREAKY people or some random 16 year old! Facebook is just a bit more mature than myspace in my opinion but yes I do spend ungodly amounts of time doing absolutely nothing.

  23. Well I suppose it like everything has its downsides, but it has completely reorganised my social life! I suppose you can:

    a)axe the friends you don't really know. Maybe harsh, but y'know, if they're people that don't matter, they won't even notice.
    b) If you love the e-mails, refuse to answer anything too trashy. Respond to brief messages in kind, and e-mail your friends for anything important. They'll get the hint!
    c) the apps and quantity of facebook stalking, I'm afraid, is all down to you :P

  24. I'm sure facebook will miss you greatly.
    I ditched my myspace a while ago but only after paying it so little attention that my friends changed my page and it took me over a month to realise.
    I hope you enjoy your freedom from social networking though, not having a computer for the last few days has made me realise how much time I waste just flicking through facebook, page after page.
    Anyway as I say enjoy your freedom and be proud of your ability to resist conformism :p.

  25. I have recently cut the cord on MySpace. I was sincerely tired of the jealousy factor of my ex and my b/f's ex. It was very hard to click on that delete button and I still find myself trying to get my fix by looking at others MS pages. Its just as bad as trying to quit smoking(which I'm doing at the same time). Its like a drug you can't live without sometimes. I have so many other things I can be doing with my time besides wasting them on finding new graphics to put on my page and when it really boiled down to it, all I wanted the thing for was to blog. Then someone told me about blogger, so here I am! Good luck to both of us and enjoy all your extra time!

  26. Well, I'm glad. I dont do facebook. So I feel *vindicated*!!! ;^D

    Myspace was only a read-only vehicle for chasing obscure bands (and remains that way)

  27. i so get what you are saying..
    i have a myspace, which i only get on every now and then. but yea, its retarded.
    my sister likes her facebook, but she hated myspace. she deleted it for all the reasons listed above, which really re-enforces #1.

  28. I'm sitting at the bottom of 28 comments. Hope you still notice little old me.

    I agree with every one of your points, but none of them annoy me enough to want to get rid of Facebook. I barely touch it nowadays, but I find it very useful at times. I joined because I'm a photo-leech, and I still use Facebook for getting photos I'm too lazy to take. I ignore every application and request and use it for the most basic of communication. But it's useful to me. Not all my friends check their e-mail or go on MSN, but loads use Facebook. I've managed to keep in contact with loads of friends who I'd never hear from again if I ditched Facebook. I know given the effort we could keep in contact any other way, but it's handy having Facebook as a basic communication program. It's like calling someone is more personal than texting them, and writing them a letter is more personal than an e-mail. It's nice to have Facebook just as another layer on the bottom, for those who either can't or wouldn't communicate with me via a more personal method. It's also handy to be able to say something without a specific audience, and then have random friends reply and chat.

    But anyway, the ranting's not important. I barely use Facebook but I love it because it makes communication easier. I'll miss you not being on Facebook, but I'm not naive enough to think I can convince you otherwise. If you feel it's a burden then be happy without it. But when I e-mail you next, I expect a reply! :-)

  29. Deev sweetie, I'm back on, as a favour to my friends. I felt cruel depriving them of my presence (just kidding, but not really). All the reasons still stand, but I grudgingly accept its usefulness.

    I think what bothers me most is that I want to keep it tidy, and I just can't. I can't make it minimalistic when the sheer weight of other people floods it every day.

  30. Not yet killed; but pretty much ignored. It took a couple of weeks, but inevitably the glow of checking in with long-lost friends dims and we are reminded why the friends were long-lost in the first place; we stopped looking for them. This is why reunions are spread out 5 or 10 years instead of running continuously.

  31. i somewhat agree with your comments... i too have planned of closing my facebook,and tagged but everytime i check my mails... i receive updates from long lost friends by and by... till now i'm still awaiting every single update of my account and just ca't get rid of it........

  32. It is so true, and dead on. What goes online stays online:


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