June 26, 2015

Goodbye Facebook

You have been fun but I’m moving on.

A month ago, I decided to say goodbye to Facebook for good after being inspired by a friend who deactivated his Facebook earlier on. We have come to a point where everybody you know has a profile on Facebook. I think the idea of being connected with people all around the world is exciting. But I began to question myself up to what point do we need to be connected and know about people’s lives?

Here are the list of reasons why I decided to deactivate Facebook.

I was being addicted to Facebook without knowing it

Every time I went on Facebook, I thought I was rewarding myself from hard work and that I wasn’t spending much time on it. This was untrue. Although my intention was to scroll through the news feed for only a few seconds, this turned into tens of minutes, dozen times an hour which you can imagine accumulates into a significant amount of time. The worst part of it was that after years of developing this habit, I felt the need to go on Facebook. It had become a habit – I would pull out my phone out of my pocket or turn on the computer just to check Facebook despite knowing there won’t be any notifications.

I was beginning to feel jealous

I still think that being connected to your friends is a great idea – but I have reconsidered whether it should be through Facebook. My personal opinion is that Facebook has become a self-validating platform. People share their achievements and it is expected that if their friends really did care about them, it would translate into a number of likes. Let me be clear, I am happy for my friends who graduated, or got a dream job, or are getting married, etc. But I feel that it is unfair that we are expected to like goddamn everything on Facebook. And after a while, liking post about how everyone was off achieving amazing things, it was hard not to compare them to my own.

People were getting really annoying

People post things on Facebook because they can satisfy both their boredom and the need for attention. However these statuses end up being usually just mindless crap. I’ve seen too many selfies taken in gym change rooms, too much whinging about customer service, too many food pics and too many heroic stories about themselves. I started to ask myself why I bother being part of this cycle by equally producing and consuming all this useless information.

Unhealthily stalking people

Facebook is great for stalking. I admit, I’ve looked up embarrassing amount of people that I just met after finding out their names. And it has been really fun to get to know about a person on this level of detail. But the more important question is – why do I need to know all this information? Vice versa, would I want someone I just met to know everything about myself? Do I want my internet persona to really represent who I am?

However, there were few simple reasons which held me back from deactivating from earlier

Being not invited to events.

However if my friend really wanted me to come to an event I would like to think that they would personally invite me if I'm off facebook.

My Facebook pages of my projects

But then I decided that Facebook marketing was pretty ineffective based on my previous experience. If I were to ever come back on Facebook to market my projects, then I think I'll create an account just for that purpose only.

Memories in photos and conversations

But then I realised I could download them all!

Before I deactivated, I made sure I did the following:

  1. Download all my data
  2. Message everyone (that I cared about) that I will be deactivating facebook. I left my number and email should they wished to contact me.
  3. Reassign administrator rights of my Facebook pages to a fake profile that I created.

And that was it. Simple.

It’s been a month since I deactivated and I can honestly say that I feel a lot happier and focused. Looking back, I don’t know what I was on about when I thought that it was such a big decision. I thought it would be really hard without it but honestly it hasn't been difficult at all.

Let’s be connected without being a showoff or a stalker.

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