Bye-bye Facebook

I’ve left Facebook. Why? Read ‘Ten Arguments for Deleting your Social Media Accounts Right Now’ by Jaron Lanier, and make your own decision. I’ve made mine.

Here’s a link to a review of this important book. https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/37830765-ten-arguments-for-deleting-your-social-media-accounts-right-now.

And for once, I can say: Read the comments.

Facebook (and Twitter and Google) are behind Brexit, behind Drumph getting elected in the States, and Drug Frod getting elected Premier of Ontario. Facebook is behind suicide (there are higher suicide rates among people active on social media). Facebook is behind the anti-vaccination movement, behind the Yellow Vest movement in Canada (quite a bit different from the Gilets Jaunes movement in France.) It’s behind jihadism and far-right terrorism. And what goes for Facebook goes for YouTube, Google, and Twitter. Of course, Facebook doesn’t actively encourage these movements. Its algorithms just allow them to flourish on its servers, in order to make money from the increased advertising activity that they generate. Facebook’s algorithms don’t care about social justice. They just seek to maximize profit.

Quitting Facebook was a little like quitting smoking, which I did in 2004. I quit several times over a few years, picking up the habit again after a few weeks. But I finally cut the cord on February 1, 2019. It took a month for Facebook to finally delete my account, and now, as of April 1, 2019, I am absolutely free of my addiction.

Like many people I know, I experienced a wave of happiness when I left Facebook. I no longer felt tied to my feed, to the constant scrolling in search of a crumb of validation via a “Like” or a comment. I no longer felt consumed with coming up with a smart reply to someone’s stinging comment. I’m a musician, and on February 16, I had one of my best gigs ever at The Rex. I just felt great, like I’d not felt before in a long time.