I am a refusee!

I believe I have coined a new word. A refusee is someone, like me, who has abandoned social media. Search engines autocorrect the word and don’t provide any hits, except in the politely offered french equivalent refusée.

What is refusee? It’s a pun on the word refugee, someone who has taken refuge. But what is a refusee? It means someone who has refused: Someone who has abandoned social media.

And not just that. Beyond quitting Facebook, Google, Instagram, Whatsapp, Twitter, and all similar social media, a refusee has turned down hardware like Amazon’s Alexa, Google’s Nest, and Voice, and software like Siri and Maps. Someone who has turned down Samsung’s voice-activated TV’s, Apple’s Watches, and an exploding number of similar surveillance applications, including even robotic vacuum cleaners that map our homes and send the information back to central servers.

Refusees don’t buy drones with built-in cameras and internet connections. We don’t buy fancy WiFi doorbells. We don’t invest in any Internet-of-Things products like smart fridges that do our shopping for us. We don’t use Spotify for our music. We refuse to participate in this brave new age of surveillance capitalism. Full stop.

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