Monday, April 20, 2009

Facebook Fatigue

Being rather healthy, I was slow to catch Facebook Fatigue. About 1 year short based on the dates of the articles in the mainstream media.

I deactivated my Facebook account today. It didn’t feel as liberating as I imagined it would. When you deactivate Facebook (under Settings if you are interested), the program attempts to change your mind (if a program can actually do that) by pleading that your various friends will miss you – complete with their profile pictures and a little message. That’s enough to make you want to quit.

Before you deactivate, you have to choose a reason. Each reason you select pops a helpful message with a link to learn more about how to optimize Facebook to overcome that problem. Even when you are finally deactivated, you receive an email advising you that you can re-join at any time by entering your email address and password. It’s like Hotel California – you can check out anytime you like but you can never leave.

The real reason for my deactivating my account wasn’t on the list to choose from – and I’m not sure it’s a real reason. Every time I try to articulate a reason it just sounds like I’m being grumpy or depressed – or both. I don’t have a lot of Facebook friends – but that’s OK. I’ve ignored a lot of friend requests because it doesn’t make sense to have all these friends in the same room. I wouldn’t invite them all to a party – so why do they all keep popping up on my Facebook page. It’s just so incongruous, all those different folks together in the same room. Some are posting about serious stuff, others are late for meetings, and still others stuck in airports. Most want to tell me that they just took some test and – “Guess what famous 1970s pop star I am?” It’s all too much!

I understand I could probably adjust my settings to filter some of the unwanted messages – but I didn’t have the energy to figure it out. In the end, I feel bad – like some sort of washed up old Luddite. Just give me a good old blog any day.

On the other hand – I am on Twitter –There’s a sucker born every minute. Follow me, @hobbledrunner.

2 comments:

julienj said...

I think it's kind of funny that you left FB, but you're Twittering...for me, it seems the opposite. I enjoy the chatter from various friends from various parts of my life. Twitter is still a mysterious entity to me, potentially intrusive...

John G. said...

So far Twitter is "interesting". I like the 140 character limit. It just makes sense, Twitter = Short, Blogging = Long - I could never quite figure out where Facebook fit in - but that's just me.