Does anyone love Facebook? I know I don't. I don't think Facebook is a dark overlord waiting to pounce on my personal information for money, though. I like Facebook to keep in contact with friends, but as a news source, I haven't found it to be useful. I find that when I'm so busy that I don't use Facebook for a couple days, I don't miss it. The website and apps are also pretty crappy.
So today, instead of just not using Facebook, I actually took the step of deactivating my account. It was on a bit of a whim, but it's been in the back of my mind for quite a while. I've been in the middle of a big social media pause, which I decided to go back on a little, but the one network I couldn't see myself using is Facebook. I tried Ello.co which I won't be using, but it got me thinking again about how I want to interact with the world.
Let me take you back to sixth grade. For a while that year, I acted like a total phony. I changed how I dress, I stopped wearing my glasses, I tried to fit in like everyone else. By the end of the year, I had wised up. For all the effort I put it to be someone else I thought people would like, I ended up as someone no one liked or noticed. It's probably silly that something that took place when I was eleven could still be relevant, but I never forgot how awful I felt being fake.
For whatever reason, being social, being connected to people, sharing my daily life, that is not me. That's me playing a part. What I am is an awkward and shy thirty-nine year old computer programmer/writer who does his best work in isolation. Period. This is not a stunning admission either, I've said this for years.
Yes, I can be social in spurts, and yes I can have a lot of fun when I do it. I loved being at #TAM2014 and Dragoncon, and I had a blast being in the DragonCon parade. I want to be in the parade again next year if possible. This isn't about becoming a hermit, but realizing that daily interactions aren't for me. I've been working on a lot of cool things since I dropped off most social networks, and I will continue to do so. When some of these projects are done, I'll announce them on Twitter and Google+.
Ah, so I dropped Facebook but I'm still doing Twitter and G+? And wasn't I supposedly going dark? Well, here's the deal. Google+ is not a social network for me. It's a place for finding interesting content, for hanging out in technical communities, and seeing great photography. I use it for a news source. The kind of content I will be sharing won't be all that social. It'll be short commentary on tech, or book reviews. I'll be using Twitter a little more, but mainly as a consumer, with only a little content added by me. I don't plan to be a big tweeter.
So there you have it, my own, personal reasons for deactivating Facebook. My reasons may not resonate with anyone but me. I hope people can respect that. My life, how I am, how I act, what I do, is in a state of constant iteration to try to achieve a personal level of arete. This is just one aspect of that. I'm just trying to make things better for myself.
I would love to hear your comments!