I signed up for Facebook years ago. Then I suspended my account. Then I got back on Facebook. Then I deleted my account. Just last week I signed up for Facebook, and within 15 minutes had deleted my account. Again. Unless I am paid handsomely for it, or my employer makes me, I just do not see myself using it.
I know all the reasons people I’m around use it (and use it regularly). And I don’t fault them. “It’s a ministry tool.” “Everyone else uses it.” “Facebook is the new way to communicate.” Yesterday, I was on the phone with a friend who lives in Bolivia. I was frustrated with the guy. He hadn’t answered the phone in MONTHS. Finally, when he did answer, he told me that he “tried to Facebook me” but I no longer had an account. But I still love you, Pablo.
It’s not that I’m anti-social network or anti-technology. I have a Twitter account. Courtney has a Flickr account. We keep a blog. And I have a phone that is smarter than I am that let’s me video chat with my family while I am out of the house. There are actually some specific reasons I do not like Facebook.
- I waste time: It is far too easy for me to get lost in people’s Facebook worlds (which are usually manufactured). I don’t need it. I have other work I need to tend to and, as vain as I am, looking at your pictures of me is not the best way to spend my day. Neither is me looking at pictures of your trip to that magical place you went. I cannot simply “have” an account. It turns into me snooping around, wasting time. I have to stay away or I’ll gorge myself on it. I don’t have a Linkedin account, nor a Myspace account, for the same reasons.
- I get annoyed: This one is about me and being judgmental, but I really don’t like seeing people do things or say things I wish they didn’t do or say. Back when I had an account, I would find myself getting angry with people because they would make comments that would bother me. Perhaps they were angry with Les Miles, or they were frustrated with the cashier at the bank. Either way, I found myself thinking far too much about those comments. So I cut them out. I realized that when I left the Facebook world my blood pressure would level out and I no longer thought about it. Not only that, but I wouldn’t get bothered when someone didn’t comment on something of mine I thought they should (I mean, come on, that picture of Ethan I posted. It was AWESOME). How is Twitter different? It isn’t completely. But at least you are limited by the amount of characters you can use.
- Believe it or not, I still like some privacy: Yes, you can read about my life a bit on the blog. You can see my family. You can email me and connect on Twitter. But those things don’t ask me who I’m related to, what school I went to, how I know people, whether or not I want to chat with someone, or buy some weird thing that someone is selling out of their garage. So I get to control the flow of information a bit better.
- I think Facebook is taking over the world: And that freaks me out. That and anything Google does.
So, Facebook users, it still may be a (long) while before I get BACK into your world. But I’m happy in my cocoon. It is warm in here. And you don’t know what I’m doing, Zuckerberg. Or do you?
Somehow, I bet you do. . .