For a “laugh”. And the result.
I’m quite a fan of experimenting on myself (apart from anything that involves salty black licorice #justcantdoit).
So I thought I’d see what would happened if I just took myself off Facebook one day.
Given the platform I’m utilising, it’s reasonable to assume social networking is not responsible for the demise of normal interaction (social lives, at least) as we know it. It can be fun, rewarding, connect you with people in far out (the geographical, not hippy sense) places and open up tonnes of opportunity.
Like the Spice Girls once mused, along with many other well-known philosophers of our day, “too much of something is bad enough”. But something was coming over me and it was making me wonder.
I started to question whether being on Facebook was making me feel isolated at a time when, surely, I should feel more connected than ever with the world. Right?
The more articles I read about the dangers of the fuzzy distinction between reality and the digital world, the more I felt my own friendships being short-sighted and diluted through screens.
Dialogue over dinner was being replaced by digi-bites over walls. Catch-ups involved reciprocating the same number of ‘o’s’ to scatterings of ‘I miss yooou’s’. Yeah, I know.
Facebook was slowly hijacking the genuine, true interests my friends and I had in each other’s lives. I feared I might one day become a narcissist (and finally know what Alanis Morissette has been singing about all these years).
I needed to act to save myself and act fast. That bit was dramatised for added effect.
So I deactivated my account. And I didn’t even think about it. Surely we would think twice about terminating a friendship in real life? I was kind of intrigued with this reaction.
And how was I coping, two weeks on from splitting up with Facebook? I have never heard from so many of my friends or had them contact me wanting to share so much of their news.
‘You’ve disappeared from Facebook! It’s been a long time, let’s go for drinks? And by the way, I’ve been thinking of deleting my account for a while as well’.
‘Yes, I’ve started a revolution. Of 1 person.’, I mused.
Didn’t really. That would be a be sad wouldn’t it. Not to mention a failing battle.
I’m back on Facebook now (but that’s not the point). My experiment taught me you can influence the medium people chose to communicate with you, and it’s as easy for you to reinforce that as it is for others.