Taking a vacation from Facebook

I took a Facebook break – a vacation if you will – this past month. I quit on the spur of the moment. Choose your cliché: It was a perfect storm of reasons to quit, or there was a straw that broke the camel’s back, or “I needed a chance to spend more time with my family”, but I made the decision to take a break within a few milliseconds of realizing that I really didn’t like being on FB any more.

I must say that I enjoyed my first three or four weeks on vacation, but I’m starting to feel the pull back to the community I left behind. My birthday is coming up anyway, and I think it would be rude not to acknowledge the greetings that will come my way. So I’ll be coming back fairly soon.

So why, really, did I feel the need to take a vacation from Facebook? None of the following reasons are all that compelling, but put together, they added up to enough frustration and discomfort to make me want to get out, at least for a little while.

  • Click Bait. I was really getting tired of the number of FB posts that claimed “We did such and such, and you won’t believe what happened next!” and a thousand variants of this. I realize this is a disease of the whole World Wide Web, but it seemed to me that it festered more virulently in Facebook.
  • Stock comments I have a sharp ear for chiché, so I quickly tire of people saying almost the same supposedly clever but ultimately tedious thing in their FB comments, such as “This is wrong on so many levels.” or “I tasted a little vomit in the back of my throat when I looked at this.”
  • Irony Enough said. The world is tired of irony, and starved for honesty and straight talk.
  • Memes and Mindless sharing I don’t think it’s particularly clever to surf the Net to share some gem on facebook. Even if the gem is a jewel of creative genius, your sharing of it is not.
  • Trolls, curmudgeons, and armchair experts. You know who you are. It is impossible to win an argument on facebook, or anywhere else for that matter. I learned this online about thirty years ago, and it’s still true, so it saddens me that people just keep on arguing, instead of sharing their knowledge.
  • Likes I won’t feel comfortable on facebook until I can find a way to disable “likes”. Waiting for someone to like your post (and being disappointed when they don’t) is the single most unpleasant aspect of the facebook experience, and I would dearly love to get rid of Likes completely, in the same way I can get rid of ads.