we need to inflict pain — on facebook

The title of this post it taken from a comment made by the Zuck himself with regards to Apple’s upcoming privacy policies against silent cross-application tracking on iOS apps and web sites. The best way to inflict pain as an individual is to use the product as little as possible, to maintain control and use it my way, not Zuck’s way.

I do have a Facebook account; my third since I first tried Facebook in the late 2000s.

  • The first time I joined Facebook I amassed hundreds of ‘friends’, played dozens of games (FarmVille being the number one), and posted all sorts of messages. Nothing outrageous, but in hindsight it showed what a blithering idiot I could be. It was as if all my adult control evaporated when I logged into Facebook. After several years I killed that account.
  • It wasn’t until the sometime around 2013 that I went back in again. This time I focused on keeping up with my kids and immediate family. I played no games, and was a  lot more circumspect about what I said. The problem that forced me to kill my second attempt was when I got into an argument over what one of my daughters said, and how my immediate family reacted. I reacted quite strongly on my daughter’s side, which stirred up a family shit-storm. Shortly thereafter I killed that account.
  • This last account I’ve kept limited to 19 people, all of them immediate work or professional friends, people I’ve come to care about. No family, not my kids. My kids have asked me not to friend them, and I understand their reasoning and respect that.

With my third foray into Facebook, I’ve adopted the following rules.

  • Little to no politics. I’m a card-carrying liberal to be sure, but I keep my comments to a minimum. If I comment at all it’s about technology issues, such as Facebook’s evil nature. I’ve unfriended a few people who’ve gone crazy conservative on me.
  • No more than ten minutes/day on Facebook. I have a timer I start to make sure that all I do is drop in, check on folks, then log out. I always log out, and I also kill that little photo login they want me to keep up on their login page. Sometimes I’ll put my account into lockdown for weeks at a time.
  • No ads. Every time Facebooks pops up an ad I kill it.
  • No recommended groups. Every time Facebook recommends a group I kill it. I’m following exactly who I want to follow. I neither need nor want any recommendations Facebooks may make.
  • Ignore recommended videos. The latest interface recommends videos for me, which I ignore. Totally.
  • Facebook and Instagram are not installed on my iPhone nor my iPads. I only visit those sites at home on my personal computer.

There are some others, but those are the key ones. I developed those first for Twitter, then adapted them to Facebook. Basically I’m an adult and can handle these social media properties in an adult manner, part of which is controlling how much of my time I invest in any and all of them. None of them, in particular Facebook, are to be trusted. As long as I never forget they’re adversaries I can keep them at arms length, so to speak. Whenever I feel I’m getting too involved I shut them down and walk away, weeks at a time if necessary. Social media isn’t addictive, but I am lazy at times and they can become a bad habit if I let them. I won’t let them, not anymore.

F*ck the Zuck.

One thought on “we need to inflict pain — on facebook

  1. Same. Facebook is a wasteland on the Internet. I have about 17 ‘friends’ and they are family members & friends I can only keep in touch with that way. If you don’t have FB Purity installed, I highly recommend it. It is a browser add-on that can eliminate almost all of the dross, which is about 99% of FB content these days. The site is unusable without it, in my opinion. https://www.fbpurity.com/

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