Why I Deactivated My Facebook Account
I am someone who lives and breathes the internet. You know, the famous question:
“If you are stucked in an island and you can only bring one thing, what would that be?”
My answer “A gadget with internet access”. I am an addict, still an addict. Haha!
So, I really love Facebook. I have it with me all the time. I share my culinary journey on Facebook because my friends didn’t believe that I can cook. Showing my first nasi lemak online was like THE success moment!
I also had this habit to make a “jumping photo” wherever I go, which many found cool. I created an album for it.
Facebook was the place for me to rant, say something random and of course, stalk others. Now, don’t tell me you don’t do that! We are all guilty!
Few months ago, I realised I felt more negative whenever I was surfing on Facebook. I didn’t find it fun anymore. I don’t seem to like it anymore. I found more fun in another site called Google Plus. Though I may not be that active and do not have many people over there, the discussions have been more concrete, inspiring and positive.
I thought much about it before deciding to do something which was simply unusual. I have to admit though, that a friend who was so tired of the social media (who also deactivated ALL his accounts but, he gave in to temptation and returned to the dark side :P ) pushed my button and that, made me think….I am not alone. I AM going to do it.
So…let me tell you the story. Why did I decide to deactivate my facebook.
- I find it very disturbing when “friends” whom I would rather call acquaintances post idiotic comments about religion and race. I couldn’t accept that. Neither do I want to create a fight cause these are all sensitive issues. So I started to delete friends.
- It was rather stressful to see people pouring their negative emotions online non-stop! Sometimes, just sometimes or maybe all the time, I just feel like saying, “You know what, stop it! No one cares.” Sometimes I am just that bitchy….haha! But I should not. On a serious note, negative stuff affects me in every way.
- I think Facebook supports superficial friendships. There are just so many people in my Facebook account. From old school friends (whom I do not talk to or do not contact) to random colleagues who worked with me when I was 19 for 3 days. I am not sure with you, but Facebook became a norm like a contact card. When a conversation gets a little comfortable, people will start to exchange Facebook accounts. Fair enough. Suddenly everyone has 1000 or more friends. Seriously?
- Because conversations can be created easily, back to point 3, everybody messages everybody without appreciating the whole value of “communication”. My communication on Facebook goes like this:
- 1% of good conversations with real good friends with worthy conversations.
- 10% of conversations that starts with a “Hi” *rants about work* and trails off without a “bye”.
The rest are acquaintances who just do not message me until they want something. Like to check prices (if it is cheaper in Germany), to buy something for them, to vote something, stuff like that.
- 50% of posts on Facebook are about politics. Malaysian politics. Don’t get me wrong. Not that I don’t care because I live in Germany now or that I do not want to care. But ranting on Facebook does not help. I am guilty too. Really. Sometimes I do share some news of Malaysia which may seem weird to my fellow non-Malaysian friends. Then I realised, everybody rants about Malaysia. Our country. That is sad.
- People take Facebook too seriously. Once friend A posted something on friend B’s wall and because of that, they don’t talk to each other. Why? Because friend B was pissed as B thinks A was tactless. People may judge B from A’s post. Especially B’s colleagues. Point taken. We all judge. We do. And we do judge from Facebook photos too! Friends do and colleagues do too.
- Due to point 6, I started to be more careful. I had many groups, blocking most of the stuff. Allowing certain groups of people to see only things I want them to see. I am so frantic about these groups and the access level that I perform an audit from time to time too.
- After being in Germany for a while, I realised people over here do not like to expose much about their life. They are also not comfortable when others expose too much. Posting stuff online was not attractive to me anymore.
- I spent too much time on Facebook which can be actually spent more effectively.
For all the reasons above, I started to not contribute so much. However, the negativity was still there. Of course I can delete friends, proceed to put more people into groups with various access levels, etc. But that is so much trouble. So I thought, “What the heck, I will just try to quit it and see how it goes”. A day before I “left” Facebook, I posted my contact details including my email address, Instagram, blog, and Twitter.
Guess what, the reactions were … disappointing. Responses were as below:
- How am I going to contact you? Email is too old fashioned. Instagram and Twitter, I do not use. Blog, I do not read.
- WHY? We will lose contact.
- But I have photos to show you. How am I going to send them to you?
- You will fall into depression. Be #foreveralone!
- How am I going to stalk you? Blog? I don’t read your blog.
Most of all: HOW CAN YOU DELETE FACEBOOK!?!?!?!
I felt sad. It was really this funny feeling inside me thinking, “Is Facebook the only way to contact friends?”
Do friends leave the moment my Facebook is no longer active??
Friends. What are friends, actually? My dear friends, if you do care for me, I am sure writing an email will not be tough. I did not totally go offline and reading emails is a breeze for me.
Actually, I would rather receive a handwritten letter. The thought of having someone who actually lifted a pen to write lots of words on a piece of paper with me in mind to share their stories is very pleasing. The feeling of waiting for the letter to arrive can be very exciting, and a sense of joy the moment the letter arrives. These are all feelings I miss and truly enjoyed when I was younger.
Is that really difficult?
Well, I am not asking for all of my friends to write letters to me but I think Facebook robbed the traditional way of communication. So much so that we no longer appreciate the moments we have when communicating.
So far it has been about two months or so without Facebook. I enjoy the “cleansing session” so far. I don’t feel any addiction but I do sometimes think of it. Let’s see how I will carry on. I may or may not return to Facebook.