Recently I deleted my Facebook, LinkedIn and Google+ account. Yep, I bit the big bullet and decided it was too great a distraction that I needed in my life. On one hand, it doesn’t sound like such a profound thing… “Oh, so you mean you just removed your username from a website?” For me it was a little more than that.
I have relationships on there. I had photos of interesting people that I had met and certain groups which I found enticing. I had my own Facebook email, and of course I loved the fact I could post endless amounts of sardonic, witty, crass, zany, and at times vaguely meaningful statuses at any time of the day wherever the heck I was. So from this you can conclude it was a fairly large part of my online persona. Once you get entrenched in some form of social networking you can’t help but have some sort of ego attached to your presence on there. For me it was time to cut it out of my life.
So why did you do it?
This happened at the end of July so it’s been roughly two whole weeks. That question is probably right on the tip of your tongue. I did it for personal reasons, and also to focus on more important day-to-day issues in my life. Taking out Facebook is changing a behavior. Now instead of thinking up a witty post or googling a funny picture to share with the mass I’m resigning to blogging (on WordPress, browsing interesting artwork on Deviant Art, and reading poetry on WritersCafe (a social networking site for writers).
They say that breaking a habit means you should have something to substitute the habit with. Think about it, if a chimney-smoking-enthusiast decides to give up puffing fags for a whole year, it’s not such a bold statement. In fact it’s idiotic, since he will have a hungry pair of eyes focussed on the finish line. In time we will be smoking again and stuck in a rut. So I do still have an online presence in certain areas. I still blog whatever I seem to fancy, and comment on interesting, humorous and meaningful post I think are worthwhile.
How will you survive without it?
It’s been two weeks (approaching the third now), and strangely I don’t miss it. To be frank it’s a massive relief to not have that burden on my shoulders. I had between 300 and 400 friends. It sounds like a helluva lot. Surely some of them will begin to wonder what happened to me
To demonstrate the amount people care…only 3 of my 300 hundred odd got back to me in person and asked why I had shut down my account. Yep, you heard me. Only three. I’m assuming some of my friends didn’t notice, while others simply thought I had deleted them as a friend. (Technically one confronted me in person, while the other two were phone calls – but hey a phone call is a little more intimate that a five-sentence email with bad spelling.)
Not even some of my work colleagues (some of whom I have a fairly close relationship with) noticed I had deleted my Facebook account. I find this interesting, the amount of value people place on the online world, when in real life those people aren’t really your friends. They’re simply monkeys behind the keyboard ready to entertain you with interesting links, demotivationals, 4Chan posts, and tedious 9gag humor.
Good for them I’ll take the harder road and allow my soul to grow in other avenues. So would you be ready to delete your social networking accounts? Give me your thoughts…