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It's... it's not that Facebook itself is the issue. It's the resulting network effects and how you interact with people while still on it.

For example: not being on Facebook means you actually have to keep in touch with people to know what they are doing. That sounds like a "duh" moment, but it's also key to how FB is replacing real social interaction with "social interaction".

The knock on effects of this are deep, because without it you have to have meaningful and importantly intentioned social interaction with people.

That changes things.

I get that it's the network effects, but I guess I don't understand how your relationships are structured. I have a core group of friends with whom I talk every day on IM or the phone or face to face, then a larger group with whom I talk a few times a week, and then the rest are acquaintances I talk to rarely.

If anything happens in any of the first two groups, I hear about it because I'm directly invited. There aren't things that I hear about from Facebook, unless it's some club organizing an event or something similar.

How do you* interact with people, generally? Do you talk to them less but see what they post on Facebook?

* By "you" I mostly mean "people who use Facebook for socialization".

I am a student and I think I can answer how I use Facebook and it provides "some" value to me.

I also have the same three tiered social circle. The first circle I have regular contacts with on the phone, WhatsApp or in person. The second circle tells me when something happens in their life like them getting placed, winning a competition or getting into a relationship.

Facebook helps me immensely with the third group. I can get to know when people are placed in jobs and can then call them up to rekindle the acquaintance (so that I can later get them to introduce me to other people to expand my professional network). If I call regularly (like maybe once each two months) then it quickly turns into silence because we don't know what the other person is doing at the moment, where they are or even what has lately happened in their lives. I can't also talk about common acquaintances due to the same lack of information.

Personally for me Facebook events serve no purpose because if any of us want to plan a meeting we can do so by phone, email or WhatsApp. It does help to plan school reunions though. Facebook's utility to me exists because the people on Facebook keep posting parts of their life on it and I can keep interacting with them without too much effort of having the pain of keeping track of over a 100 acquaintances.

I see, thank you, that makes sense. My problem is that I'll go on Facebook, and see people posting stuff I don't care about, and unfollow them (and obviously lose their important updates as well). Pretty quickly, I have nobody in my timeline, and I just talk to people to see how they're doing.

I agree. Facebook either needs to allow more fine control on what we want to see (education updates, work updates, photos but no text statuses) or improve it's algorithm so that a new comment on a month old content doesn't make it conquer my feed.

I deal with it slightly by checking the "See updates from these people first" for certain people. It causes them to appear in a cluster at the top of my feed. The best thing is that the cluster is collapsed to show just two stories and I can then expand if there are more.

Your core group of friends may use Messenger for IM and FB events for meeting up. You can still probably catch up but it will take a _lot_ more effort.

0riginal neckbeard here - I have none of these problems, I have no friends, personal network, relationships, photos, or social interactions. I have never had Facebook, and I feel absolutely fantastic.

I can attest to that. It is like herding cats.

The question is why then keep an account?

> That changes things.

No, that's exactly what it doesn't. Rather, it leaves them as they were before this stupid and insufficient replacement was invented.

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