What did people in my situation do before Facebook? My parents, like most baby boomers I suspect, weren’t going out in the evenings to see friends in person. They’d sit down in front of the TV after work. Their social lives were narrow, focused heavily on home life and the kids. That’s what Facebook is replacing, and it’s a huge improvement.
a) I don't need to know about the project my distant friend is working on, or the food anyone is making or eating* .
b) A solution that existed before Facebook were X-Mas cards. So, I think that's what I'll be doing when I no longer see my parents and close friends daily.
* On a side note, my mom calls my grandma for an hour or so weekly and they frequently talk about what they cooked and exchange recipes, but that's more personal than a Facebook/Instagram post.
If most of your friends only post once a week or so you might just see 5 or 10 posts in a day. And usually it's somewhat interesting.
Not having the app and staying logged out by default also helps. I'll just scroll through facebook once every couple of days now, instead of the old "10 times a day". And I don't feel like I'm missing much except for being a bit late to reply to event invites.
Facebook is just a never-ending stream of shit I don't really care about or need to hear about. The time I don't spend on Facebook is vastly better spent than the time I spend on Facebook, even when that time is just watching whatever dumb TV show that helps me unwind (as opposed to reading nonsensical commentary from random people I don't know uttering all the manner of stupidity)
I haven't quit it per se, but I the only thing I really use it for anymore is organising my monthly board-game night with friends.
As such I find the things Facebook does to try and pull you in to be extremely annoying. Pushing a notification at me claiming I have all kinds of "new" shit I need to look at when in reality it's just a recycling of shit I ignored months ago is, frankly, pretty hideous.
You know what, posting this has actually inspired me to go in and do a nice big ol purge...
Edit: corrected geographic confusion
Really, what is the point of a post like yours other than to negate the post that came before it by articulating why you don't care about the issue raised?
I have to agree, as someone that quit many years ago and hasn't looked back since. I still communicate with my long distance relatives, just not publicly. I use a combination of Google Hangouts, email, and just plain old phone calls to keep up to date with their lives. I share photos daily, via google photos, directly to those that I want to see them. And my family, who happen to use Facebook, know to send me photos using other methods.
This way, I only get information/photos that is meant for me to see. Not just every day stuff that's going on in everyone's life. To me, that's not important to my relationships, and is really a waste of my time that I can be using with my family in my house. The interactions I do share, though, is extremely important to me.
This seems like an inconvenience you impose on everyone else to do things Facebook handles natively.
I suspect over time we will learn that Facebook and the like is actually poor at maintaining social relationships in a meaningful way. It seems like it works but I maintain my social network dine without it. And yes I am fine having far fewer, but quality interactions. I don't think I impose any cost on my friends and family. If we can't chat once in a while via voice or video we just aren't that important....
Most people are familiar with Dunbar's number, which expresses the size of a total community. That's not the number of important relationships, but essentially the number of total relationships you can juggle.
In your life, should it be a reasonably long one, you'll experience about a half-million waking hours. If you get to know 10,000 people in your life, the total time you can dedicate to any one of them is about two days (48 hours).
In The Mythical Man Month, Fred Brooks notes the dynamics of team communications, which rapidly develop complexity after about 5-6 members. Programming teams, unless the work can be modularised to the extent teams have full independence generally lose effectiveness as they're scaled above this level.
The Politburo Standing Committee of the Communist Party of China -- effectively the inner cabal of government -- has ranged from 5-9 members, and is presently 7. (Each of them represents the interests of about 185 million Chinese.) Again, tight working groups simply do not scale past a large size.
I've been digging at various elements of this question for a few years, largely informally. But the clear point is that your relationship time is limited, that close relationships take time and investment, and that as attention is spread, the nature of those relationships tends to deteriorate.
(I'm not aware of specific literature on this offhand though I'm certain it exists.)
From the wiki:
Dunbar's number is a suggested cognitive limit to the number of people with whom one can maintain stable social relationships. By using the average human brain size and extrapolating from the results of primates, he proposed that humans can comfortably maintain only 150 stable relationships.
If you're important to them, then people will do whatever they need to keep in touch with you. Inconvenience is when they don't care enough to keep in contact with you. While in a perfect world everyone would accept your impose line of communication, in your case Facebook, everyones preference is different.
don't misunderstand i log in about once a month but because i have other platform (and because i'm terrible at keeping in touch), but other than political or idelogical reasons why not use it for your family convenience?
Put another way, if your family/friends can't be bothered to actually communicate with you one-on-one about things in their lives because it's less convenient than posting to everyone, then those relationships must not be very valuable. To those of us who care about maintaining quality relationships, convenience is a non-factor. I would much rather have lunch with a friend a few times a year than read their stream-of-life facebook posts on any kind of regular basis, even though the former is several orders of magnitude less convenient.
Moreover there is a great difference in motivations and convenience; facebook is convenient for many people as a fact and there is nothing wrong with keeping contacts with acquaitances
Yes, but isn't it a bit ironic to say you don't use Facebook because it wastes your time, and then expect others to spend extra time communicating with you?
Surely the question is not about what you absolutely need or not. You could strip you life back to only necessities. Some people might find that fulfilling, but I suspect many wouldn't.
I think the question is more of cost/benefit. Do the benefits of something sufficiently outweigh their costs.
I've come to the conclusion that this round of social media is possibly the worst incarnation of technology in the past 30 years. Hopefully the next version is less shitty.
You're literally doing a cost/benefit analysis.
You seem to be assuming that such an analysis implies there there has to be substantial benefits, or something like that. (I'm not commenting here on whether they do or don't exist in the case of Facebook)
1. Take person literally to a fault in order to create a counterpoint.
2. Say obviously true, yet embarrassingly vague things to defend that counterpoint.
3. Respond "I'm not talking about that" when any possibility of nuance would enter the discussion.
I'd even be tempted to speculate that those of us who aren't Facebook addicts are the ones who are able to socialise just fine without it, thank you very much, if it weren't for the fact that I know plenty of good-living, fun-loving Facebookers too.
Weekends, we went to someone's house and just hung around all day. Which house was a rotating thing, so nobody was stuck hosting all the time. Adults sat around in the kitchen drinking wine or whatever, and kids ran in feral packs through the neighborhood.
I was born in Australia in the late 70s and the picture you paint of pre/post Facebook doesn't ring true to my experience.
* Yes, I know that I can set the target group but I never set it up and is too much work for just a small posting
- Tag a friend who ...
- Inspirational quotes of any kind
- Social game results of any kind (or invites for that matter)
In my own feed I had a few culprits who were largely responsible for this noise. I think only in one case did I have to resort to unfollow (although it's an option). It seems that less than 20 sites/pages are responsible for the vast bulk of these. Or perhaps that's just the case out of my friends. I really don't know. Either way after hiding these posts and choosing to see no more posts from whatever the source page was, my news feed is pretty clean.
Others post a lot of BS politics, which I kinda hate. The more ignorant ones (we're talking family here) I've even baited when bored. But I know people who have started using Instagram to avoid the nonsense politics (even though some of these same people like to share inspirational quotes /sigh).
If you're interested in say family photos and updates then Instagram may be a purer experience for you. Assuming who you're interested in posts to Instagram that is.
As for your stuff not getting shared/liked, well that's a whole other thing. Disclaimer: I work for Facebook. Only for a short time thus far but long enough that I've been involved with a bunch of research on groups. A lot of people take groups pretty seriously. One admin I heard speak was talking about how he always made an effort to make people feel included and heard like if someone's post wasn't getting a lot of comments they'd go out of their way to comment on it and include others so that person felt like part of the community.
So I don't know what your interests are but I'm pretty sure at this point there's a group for basically everything. In the right group you may find more sense of community and less of a barrier to posting and sharing because of good admins and just the common interest you have by being in that group.
I don't know what it is exactly, but the Facebook stream fills me with an anxious loathing -- I even find that shade of blue repulsive.
Interesting, but I am not even looking for a community, I just don't want to put a post out there that will be "unsuccessful". It doesn't bother me if I only get a few likes, it bothers me that all my friends see how my post is "failing". I am not in panic but it puts me off from posting. Am I the only one with those thoughts? Facebook without the like mechanism would cater to me much more.
Whatever posts I make on Facebook are usually things I genuinely want to share, whether it's photos while I'm traveling, or link to an article that I find really meaningful. Some people will see it, they might even like it but not press Like, I don't really care. It's something that I wanted to share and I know it reached someone, and that's all I wanted to do. It could be an article that explains really well what Net Neutrality means and why people should care, or it could be an amazing waterfall in Iceland.
Incidentally, I subscribe to certain subreddits about hobby topics (like Dragon Ball Z), and whenever I make posts on them, I (irrationally) care more about how many upvotes (or worse, downvotes) my posts get than I care about my posts' "success" on Facebook. So maybe I do know what you mean, but I see Facebook differently (and more personally and less social-media-y) than everyone else does.
I don't know much about Facebook's feed because I don't use it a ton, but can't you just unfollow the people who post this stuff? I'd imagine after doing this just a handful of times, your feed would become a lot better tuned to the kind of stuff you actually want to see.
The ~once a month I do end up scrolling through my Facebook feed, I find a pretty healthy amount of interesting things from those friends of mine that are interesting. The majority of these aren't even links, they're actual posts.
Actually I did just a month ago but now my feed is quite empty. It seems the people I am interested in stopped posting or even deleted their accounts. I wonder whether and how FB is working on getting those back.
Shitposting has helped me personally get over that. I share stuff I find interesting and fun. If people like it, wonderful, if they don’t, eh it was a shitpost anyway what do I care.
The reasons I keep doing it are in part the same as everyone, it’s great when a little thing you found cool garners some attention, much dopamine, or brings out some stimulating discussion, much learn. But when it doesn’t do any of those, it still helps me better remember and notice those little moments in life that otherwise pale into the background. A form of intentionalness and inthemomentness or whatever the zen buzzwords are these days, if you will.
Strangely enough, I get more comments and questions IRL than I do likes/comments on Facebook. Seems people love to watch and read, but don’t lik publicly exposing themselves as having done so.
I have a once close friend who moved out to Oregon from the east coast. I talk to him every two years when somebody dies at home. Knowing that his kid won the pinewood derby doesn’t give us anything more in common.
Whatever it is, it’s not a substitute for real two-way interaction. Meaningful relationships don't survive on impersonal status updates broadcast to a general audience.
If it involves communication back and forth (e.g. telling each other what happened at work) that’s something. If it’s scrolling passively through status updates or photos, or posting updates on yourself to nobody in particular, it’s junk food.
All my close friends, I direct message them almost everyday.
I got Facebook in 2006, when it was only college kids (and some high school kids), and my usage throughout college was 99% photo sharing and event planning. 10 years later, my usage of Facebook is......99% photo sharing, event planning, and messaging.
At no point did Facebook launch a feature that pointed a gun at your head and forced you to mindlessly scroll through your feed. Blaming the product/platform for people's unhealthy use of it is like blaming dessert or alcohol for existing: I avoid both of those things a lot more than most people do, but I also wouldn't want a world that completely lacked them.
I can smoke cigarettes responsibly. One every few weeks, which I have researched and believe does not negatively impact my health. In fact, it provides a moment of stress relief that outweighs possible negatives.
How do you feel about cigarette legislation? They've never pointed a gun and forced people to smoke. (Which, by the way, is an awful metric for whether something should be banned. Except for gun pointing.)
> Which, by the way, is an awful metric for whether something should be banned
Dude, seriously, _what are you talking about_? At no point did I mention anything about banning Facebook or anything else. I don't know whose post your comment is supposed to be responding to, but just FYI you clicked "reply" under mine for some reason.
The point I am making is that "Facebook use" and "unhealthy Facebook use" are not the same thing, and the tendency I am criticizing is writing articles about the latter and bait-and-switching them to be about the former. I can use my phone to call a drug dealer, I can use my car to hit a pedestrian, I can use my computer to harass people online: and yet nobody considers those to be indictments of the overall concept of phones, cars, or computers.
Leaving aside the fact that your cigarette example doesn't make any sense:
Which cigarette legislation in particular are you thinking of? I'm of the same mind as the rest of society when it comes to kids being protected and having less autonomy in their decision-making, so not being able to advertise cigarettes to kids is obviously good. I'm not opposed to Pigovian taxes to balance externalities, especially when harm scales with amount of use and has significant enough externalities (like second-hand smoke), so the taxes on cigarettes don't bother me either. I think that there's some scope for paternalistic legislation of activities that don't harm others, but I think the bar has to be pretty damn high and pretty damn robust for that.
I think a good metaphor is after you've broken up with someone, it can be healthier not to hold onto to a lot of photos, memorabilia, and so on associated with your ex. It's not that you are throwing your ex away; you're making room for a new person.
I've sometimes observed people are so caught up in the lives of old school friends, old colleagues, family and such that they don't have room for new, local relationships.
I think many people can use Facebook in a healthy way. The same can be said of alcohol, video games, reddit, and Internet news feeds. But, for many others, all of these can become damaging addictions. A lot depends on the individual at hand.
To give just one example - in the past, you might have gotten birthday e-mail from a few people. You would have a sense that these people thought about you enough to pay attention to your birthday and contact you. Likewise, if you cared about someone enough, you could do the same and signal that you thought of them highly as a friend.
But now you have Facebook asking everyone your connected with to leave a birthday message on your birthday. I've seen people who's Facebook accounts seem to clearly be dead, but they keep getting the same dozen birthday greetings each year from the same people who actually don't care enough about the person to notice they're no longer on.
And since the Facebook birthday seems to be the way a lot of people think about their friend's birthdays these days, not participating means that you're going to get much fewer birthday greetings than you would have in the pre-Facebook days.
Again, this is just one example, but I think it does a decent job of illustrating how Facebook has supplanted a lot of more substantive communication and replaced it with copious amounts of junk food communication.
This implies that one replaced the other, or that one can be brought about by eliminating the other.
IMNSHO, this is a form of false nostalgia: I saw how much of my parent's generation lived: for most people, social networks haven't replace real world socializing.
Sure, TV as a time waster also existed. And most people did spend some nights watching it. But it was not all night, every night. At least not for the majority of people.
I'm pretty sure I'm doing more of that with Facebook than I would without it. Hiking trips, cycling trips, spontaneous picnics, parties, trips to a concert - Facebook makes it easier to organise those things, and means you stay in better touch with people with more common interests. Pre-Facebook it was easy to do the common things that a critical mass of people liked, but much harder to do any kind of slightly niche social activity.
The time that I spend on Facebook is time that would have been wasted otherwise (mainly on my commute). It's not taking away from quality time.
Do the math. 17 hours per day with the TV not turned on. And even the hours it was on doesn't mean the whole family was watching. Let also consider how many people watched the news every night, and stayed up for Carson. And an hour of TV after school was probably the norm. Soap operas also were popular in the 80s. Tack on an hour of MTV somewhere in the day, and that just about accounts for the average even before we consider how we spent our evenings.
There was plenty of time for all kinds of things.
Then you only got 16h left...minus 7h of watching TV leaves 9h...most people work 8h and in 1985 had a 40m or so commute to work...if you are still counting: we just hit about 0!
Sorry...that’s how statistics work. That not to discount cute edge cases of families playing cards with their neighbors and having ice cream...it’s just not the reality for the majority of the population :(
I dunno, maybe pick up the phone and have an actual conversation?
> My parents, like most baby boomers I suspect, weren’t going out in the evenings to see friends in person.
What the... what is this? It's like some bizarre propaganda written by Zuck himself.
> That’s what Facebook is replacing, and it’s a huge improvement.
Yeah, better to observe your friends from a distance like some kind of science project instead of having genuine interactions with them. Great improvement.
Your TV comment reminds me that one of the biggest shows was "Cheers" where you kinda get to feel like your hanging out with people your age.
I think this is just biased on beeing used to the 'Facebook way' outside of this bubble your arguments just sound strange. (like why would I care what they cook or how their children look right now?)
1) Socialised with local friends
2) Interacted with remote friends via the telephone
People in your situation before phones probably:
2) Interacted with remote friends via the mail/telegram
3) Didn't have that many remote friends due living in an era that provided less opportunities for long-distance travel
People in your situation before telegrams/mail:
2) Didn't usually have any remote friends due living in an era that provided less opportunities for long-distance travel and/or communications
I think if you will do some reading you'll discover that life proceeded quite handily prior to the availability of long distance communications and/or travel to the general populace.
Is it really tho? I'm not even conservative, I just think that there's certainly something to be said about a social life focused on the kids and home life, instead of replacing that with hollow attention seeking on Facebook.
What it's being replaced with? People who post pictures of their children, which to many is often the whole extent of the interaction with their kids; Just another prop to collect likes on FB.
I admit that's just my anecdotal personal experience from a really bad case, I still think it's a very relevant angle to this as many people do use Facebook as a form of escapism from reality.
This probably couldn't have happened without Facebook proper (now my parents are on WhatsApp), but I think mobile chat groups are a much better form-factor for the type of communication you want.
That's what fentanyl and oxys are replacing, and it's a huge improvement.
The frame of reference of TV might not be the right one. I think the counterfactual scenario is a better comparison point. We should consider what the internet and social media COULD have been had it not been monopolized by a handful of closed, ad-tech motivated platforms.
The internet before Facebook was still a social place that fostered connections between people. I made friends all over the world through UseNet, IRC, PHPBB forums, personal blogs like Xanga or MySpace, and other such platforms. But those weren't conducive to collecting data or serving advertising, so we they fell behind on investment, development, and market penetration.
Even Facebook didn't used to focus on a feed on informations shoved in your face, that was the ad platform they built on top of it. It used to be a collection of personal profile pages, essentially a mini-bio to look people up on. They had associated forum groups you could make/sign up for to socialize with individual groups of people. They've since turned those from conversational groups into "pages" that you subscribe to, better to have content pushed at you but less good at fostering conversation among people.
There are still good group-chatting platforms for actual friends to talk to each other. I keep in touch with my family around the world through WhatsApp (since colonized by Facebook natch). I maintain friendships with people from my MMO days through GroupMe. And I hear the kids today are all about Discord. These all facilitate more human-to-human interactions than platforms like Facebook or Instagram do, IMO.
Discussion forums maintain a persistent sense of identity for the participants so you interact foremost with a person and secondarily with whatever they happen to be saying at a given time on a given topic. Stuff like Facebook privileges content first, so the focus is on the message itself and secondarily on the person making it (good for marketing, bad for socializing).
Even discussion forums like HN or Reddit focus on content over identity. The old PHP forums had avatars and garish signatures and a whole bunch of other visual cues to give each speaker a distinct identity. Everything anyone said is strongly associated with an individual so you build up reputation and identity over time, which is essential for developing a form of community. Platforms like this make one person's comments indistinguishable from any other, so it becomes really hard to develop human connections with anyone.
You don't even need avatars and visual cues. IRC didn't have those, but what it did have was a requirement that someone had to BE IN THE ROOM to see what you're saying. So it's a vibe that's more like a conversation in a pub. You actually have to be aware of who is around and listening when you talk rather than screaming into a whirlwind of activity and seeing who replies. It's cozier. You're aware that you're talking specifically to a group of people that is around, which causes you to put yourself in their shoes when you talk rather than being all solipsistic.
And all of that is before we even get into the gross KPI-derived metrics (likes, shares, ratios, etc.) for evaluating our contributions that Facebook-style social media does which is a whole separate and disgusting thing.
<naravara has left the room>
If Facebook is the Junk Food of Socializing, it is like a McDonalds that has successfully lobbied for a ban on the sale of home cookware, whilst buying out all the other restaurant chains.
They've successfully lobbied to ban my personal website?
McDonalds has successfully convinced people that it's not worth cooking food at home anymore.
^^^ And this is the type of mentality that makes me not want to use social media :tm:.
A reasonably well-lit picture of your face will serve admirably. Serious or happy or amused are good expressions; try not to look angry or sad. There, you're done.
You don't need to go all out on joining some imaginary race to the best profile. No one cares.
Don't take this the wrong way, but push come to shove, HN falls into this low truly impactful life nutrition as well. This is not a critique. It's just that despite my semi-best attempts the signal to noice ratio remains suboptimal.
The message is this: What so often (read: too often) masquerades as meaningful and of substance - in the grand scheme of things - really isn't. It creates a self-serving blind-spot. And thus reactions such as yours.
Don't get me wrong. I LOVE to learn new things. But I'm finding - as I look in the mirror - that I'm picking up too much (what amounts to) trivia. And that the human connects are far from legit.
But this is my doing. I've forgotten to say "no thank you." But admitting I have the problem is my first step to addressing it.
I've seen this happen at three tech companies multiple times at each so I'm not willing to entertain the group of guys who I KNOW are going to comment on this and say "well not every guy is like that". True, but it only takes a few at every company to make a girl feel like a targeted object more than an employee.
Once the facebook search came out (way after I got rid of it) I was a manager managing about 25 guys in my tech firm and they used to use the facebook search to search by age, relationship status of all the females in the company constantly on the prowl.
Was so gross and terrifying and made me happy I didnt have one.
Another time about three years after college a guy I had never seen or met before came up to me at a restaurant and started blabbing on about my life, asking me if I was still dating that deuschbag from college and openly admitted who knew all of this from my facebook back in college and asked me what I was up to now. I mean wow, couldn't possible be more happy that people DON't know what I'm up to.
Not to mention old guys are creepy and use it to stare at all the bikini pics of their friends daughters.
I wish I could be ignorant and dumb enough to not know all this but unfortunately I work with a bunch of creepy men twice my age in tech for years now and they assume I don't notice these things.
If you are a girl in tech, youre better off not having a facebook, you honestly cannot even begin to fathom how many men are keeping tabs on you.
and here come the downvotes....
I'm not a mod but I'll still say that this is frowned upon. Wrt the downvote itself, I promptly rewarded you with mine for your representing of stalking as a male only phenomenon. This blanket statements blaming men for everything really grosses me out and does not help at all with the feminist cause. Saying "hey you're all nasty pigs" is not persuasive at all, especially when I at the receiving end of the attack am not at all guilty of what you blame every single person with.
I responded rather abruptly and forcefully so that everyone within earshot could hear: "She's quite good at what she does."
I'm baffled that psych studies have to be referenced for people to see the obvious; and I'm certainly not on a higher plane of self-aware existence, either.
People come to different conclusions even when presented the same facts. In a case like this, they don't even have the same fact, nor the same background or even the same age (to a teenager Facebook is a completely different place than for an adult).
The fact that sugar and refined carbs (pasta/rice/bread) is bad for you is not even obvious to most people.
Did you know oxygen was once a terrible, toxic substance that was "bad for you"? 
It still is, to some degree. But cheap sources of energy always win in the end.
My point is that we (as humans) suck at processing some things and appreciating the true timescale of optimization. Our bodies fight old cargo cult wars, an exercise in wanton complexity. Hardly an argument against change.
I suspect the same applies to the "badness" of junk food and social media, except it has accumulated less baggage and hence can steer faster.
A lot of "the obvious" is wrong. Studies can help us determine whether it's actually right or wrong.
Pretty much any bit of knowledge we've accumulated over the centuries contradicts things that people thought were "obvious".
As an aside, I'm kinda amazed how common this "what's the point of studying something that's obvious" attitude is. You hear it anytime there's any research done on something that people take as "obvious".
(Mostly) Regular people - those most likely to use Facebook - aren't hearing these cries.
It’s a built in community of people who are likely there because of ritual and tradition (am Catholic) and do not care about talking about startups or entrepreneurship (a breathtaking relief sometimes).
Church and religion has gotten a lot well-justified complaints over the years, but by liberal and moderately-conservative people abandoning it in droves, it only made it more conservative and dogmatic sadly.
Also if you think “hey I can’t go to church they don’t believe in XYZ” just know that something like 40%+ of priests believe that gay marriage is possibly within the church’s right to support (again citing Catholic stuff here), so there is a lot more support than you think but political change is hard and it’s harder if you stay home.
Also I will say that it’s almost “cool” to go to church now. It’s been, again for good reasons such as pointless cultural battles in the 90’s that American churches waged, cool to not do religious stuff but now it’s so passé. Whenever I see a person railing against religion on Reddit I can’t help but think they are exactly the person we could have used in the 1920s at the Snopes Trial, but otherwise their viewpoint is entirely unhelpful and conformist today.
My wife's parents are strongly religious. When my 5 year old son stays over he gets a good dose of creationism. I've always thought that that was fine. Its not my belief but I don't see why people can't hold different beliefs. I enjoyed the idea that he could make up his mind on his own.
But lately, its become apparent that for many church-goers, they aren't prepared to (or able to) hold contrasting positions in their heads. Most specifically, I don't see why people can't maintain their belief in god, but at the same time understand that its man that has to rescue himself from the wreckage we are inflicting on the planet.
I've now reached the stage where I need to tell my son that his grandparent's beliefs are fairy tales, because I really fear the danger that is being wrought by people who hold zealous, single minded views. Certainly not all religious people are like that - but it increasingly seems that many are.
But I think you can do better than just saying "these are fairy tales". I recently read a book from a former atheist (Jennifer Fulwiler) who came from a very loving and intellectually honest family. Her father said this when she was young: "Make sure you don't start believing things just because someone says it's true, even if it's coming from me. Question everything." I wish more people would be like that, atheist and religious alike.
There need to be more social institutions that encourage different people from different backgrounds to come together and learn to be more respectful of one another. How about a renaissance for bowling leagues?
What if that "XYZ" is the god that the church believes in? Or no god at all? I really wish there was an alternative to "go to church", because I do agree with you on the community aspect. To me it's just a shame that probably the most efficient way of connecting with people is still via religious beliefs.
Also I noticed you used the word “efficient”. What if meeting people is supposed to be inefficient, what if “efficiency” in meeting people is the worst possible thing to “optimize” for. Sometimes when meeting people is slow, when you’re forced to get along because “oh man this guy goes to the same church and could tell on me if I’m rude and whatever he’s the most interesting person I’ve met so far” you force yourself to discover better understandings and deeper connections with people. Maybe that in the end is what religion is about.
EDIT: Also something beautiful about being connected to the humans of thousands of years ago and doing similar rituals as them. The connection to human ancestry, sometimes more so than god, is another beautiful thing about religion. Even among the Chinese, which is not a very theistic society, this is noted in their traditions of ancestor shrines and worship
So, I'm assuming that you also have some qualms about how Facebook or Google does business?
Does that mean you refuse to use Facebook or Google?
By using commercial services, you are actually supporting them financially. You can go to most any church without donating anything at all.
Interesting. In my (predominantly Catholic) country, people do that for weddings and funerals, it's widely accepted and in fact it would look radical to stay out of a wedding for not believing. But I don't think non-believers going to "regular" mass is a common thing, I think it would be seen as odd and probably not very welcome by the believers.
Also, one of the main prayers said in Catholic mass starts with "I believe in God, the Father Almighty". So consciously being in a group that says that looks literally like lying to me, even if it's a white lie.
 Incidentally, it's not that I'm not open to changing my beliefs, it's that (in my experience) believers are aggressively awful at converting nonbelievers. In many cases they don't even accept that it's possible to be a nonbeliever, immediately falling into "angry at God" tropes.
Given a prayer to a god one doesn't believe in feels dishonest for some, as does nodding along and letting people assume you share their beliefs when you don't. The foundation for church is supposed to be a shared theological belief, so it's not too difficult to understand why some might be uncomfortable joining when they know that they don't share the belief and have to go through certain motions to conceal this fact from their brethren.
"Unitarian Universalists believe that each person is free to search for their own personal truth on issues, such as the existence, nature, and meaning of life, deities, creation, and afterlife." -Wikipedia
>What is Sunday Assembly?
>Sunday Assembly is a secular community that meet regularly to celebrate life. Our motto is “Live Better, Help Often and Wonder More” and our mission is to help everyone live life as fully as possible.
>What happens at a Sunday Assembly?
>A Sunday Assembly service consists of songs (pop songs mainly) sung by the congregation, a reading (usually a poet), an interesting talk (that fits into live better, help often or wonder more), a moment of reflection and an address, which sums up the day and hopefully gives a take home message. Afterwards we have tea and cake (well, in Britain anyway!) to encourage people to stay and mingle with one another. Outside of the event we organise small groups (Smoups), and other social activities such as book clubs and choir, peer-to-peer support and local volunteering.
It is not cool to go to church because it's still a terrible ideology for society.
It is easy to make facebook bad, and that's a problem, but its a problem that all social sites have. If you go to a message board and that message board has frequent posters who pride themselves in stirring the pot to increase activity, it might be good short term, but long term its a poor habit for those posters and its a miserable experience for other users.
If you use facebook as an outlet for negativity you'll find that misery loves company. If you use facebook to interact with people in comments, but don't interact in real life it will turn hollow at some point.
I feel like there are two problems. First is that people prefer to vilify facebook than to offer solutions to whatever problem they are facing. Second is that there is no roadmap to steering one's own facebook experience into a positive one once it has gone south.
For instance... if in 2016 you were active in politics because of the election, it's likely that you still have a bunch of political discussion and news within your news feed and ads. And all of that is increasingly negative and polarizing as those businesses and interests try desperately to maintain your mindshare. If you want to get rid of it, there is no preference. You have to train it with your newfound lack of interest. You have to fix your own behavior, facebook doesn't have a way of fixing it for you.
The same kind of thing applies to real social interactions. If you isolated yourself into online-only interaction or online-centric interaction, you have to change. But how? Well, it's not that hard if you put thought into it, but few people actually put any thought into it.
I don't know what facebok or any platform can do to resolve this problem. Maybe there's a secondary niche market for online social coaching or profile fixing.
"Junk food" is probably putting it nicely, many skip straight to comparing to one of various illicit drugs.
When popular, a huge amount of the population used cigarettes despite growing research showing that it had a slight but consistent harmful effect. A hooked individual is unlikely to stop using even when given this evidence, as the product is addictive and gets stronger with network effects. Younger generations understood the harm better and had to avoid regular temptation to engage.
Comparisons to heroin are overblown. Nobody is losing their identity, money or life due to facebook. It's just a little bad and very addictive.
* It was free of advertisements
* Posts were fully encrypted so even facebook couldn't see read them
* There's no public posting
* They can't data mine
* They can't sell your data
* Everyone in a group had their own server side and/or local
copy of all posts to that group
* You could unfriend or ignore users
* You could create filters by users or groups and keep them off your main "timeline" (also complex filters based on attributes like title, content, photos)
* You could delete your copy of posts but not other people's copy
* You could easily download all the data including posts and pictures any time you want
* You could easily set up internal or private "facebooks" on your own servers
* If you forget your password, there's no recovering anything.
* You don't need a separate app for private messaging
I'm extrovert and I'm drawn to comment sections of everything. As a result I get stuck on facebook comment sections. And this kills the time I would use for face to face socializing.
Here I am, writing to comment section...
I'm beginning to think the latter is intentional, just like scam email with copious misspellings.
One of the answers to your implied question is events. I belong to one of many, many subcultures who organize almost exclusively through facebook. This one happens to be related to dancing.
There are around 5 weekly events held regularly, along with a number regular of monthly-ish classes and around one special event per month held locally. Facebook is just way better than the alternative (meetup), and better than the old way (email lists).
1. Organizers can update events instead of sending a new message
2. Organizers get to see a list of people who claim they're going
3. The message thread and images associated with events are much easier to deal with instead of throwing everything into one big slush pile that is an email list.
4. It makes much more sense to create events way ahead of time (think a year out).
5. It's easier for participants to see which events their friends are going to.
Ultimately, email just isn't very good for a number of use cases and events is one of them. These are also some of the same reasons why people started using wikis or sharepoint instead of email.
- Dont use your real name, gender, nationality, etc. Just create a random identity.
- Dont post pictures, ask friends to not post pics of you. Remove all tags. NEVER EVER POST PICS OF YOUR KIDS.
- tailor your news feed: Aggressivly remove/unfollow people/groups that add only trivial noise and no interesting content. In doing so, I actually started to enjoy my thinned out feed.
- comb through your friend list once a year (I always do after New Years) and clean house. Some people collect friends like trophys and are proud of their 1254 contacts. Instead, do the opposite: Try to keep it as small as possible. Ask yourself, do I really need and care for this contact? Remove people that do not add value to your life.
- Dont use the messanger app. Turn off all notifications.
EDIT: Why jump through all these hoops? FB gives me a unique value. The trick is to fold all the virtual social network back into real life. This is especially useful when you are in multiple disjunct groups. Most of my social activities are organized through FB:
- arrange the next casual soccer kick
- see when is the next social dance and who is going
- friend organizes a christmas dinner party
- other friend goes to a science slam, I might join
- who wants to go bouldering this weekend?
- see this neat trick in the "Upcycling" group how to reuse an old ...
- oh, this old cafe in my borough is getting kicked out. Friends are organizing a solidarity march.
Since almost everybody is on it, organizing/getting this info would be so much harder without FB.
I also like to keep people in my feed that have a contrairian view point to mine. Keeps you sharp and sometimes you learn that your viewpoint might not have the best argument...
I do a different test. It's called "Do you care about me?"
If I got in a car crash over the weekend, would you even know? If you found out, would you visit me in the hospital?
If the answer is yes: but they're family, I already have their contact info. For non-family, that group fluctuates, and more often than not, it's zero. I'm fine with the number staying there. Benefits include: Less drama, breakups, regrets, and more time to get work done.
If the answer is no, which it mostly is: I feel I save time and am more self-honest not connecting with them.
But as I get closer to 30 I feel less interest in connecting with others. The only exception is when I travel abroad and the surroundings are more intriguing.
On the other hand: Social media is a great marketing tool. I'm fine if people use Facebook however they choose. And I also agree with pruning boring content in favor of subscribing / liking manually.
Work is important, but your work can't love you back.
Work is where we spend the majority of our time and I suspect that >50% of adult friendship originates at work. It is important to think of work as a social activity and put some effort. Even if you are very much a "work to live" person, it is worth knowing your co-workers well enough to decide if you want to pursue them as friends.
If you consider time spent at work as a "social activity" I would suggest spending more time working while at work.
Most people do not meet their good, actual, lasting friends at work, usually work friendships are pretty superficial. Most fade once you aren't required to see each other every day.
I feel that's the mentality pressuring people into social networks that otherwise wouldn't use them. Appealing to stuff like status, happiness, and so on.
And I don't think it works out in practice. I think putting social stuff, especially facebook on the back burner, and investing in accomplishments as a primary goal, is the best life choice.
As far back as history goes, people have both sought and claimed to have the answers to happiness. I don't think relationships are going to give me that fulfillment in the end.
Look at celebs: despite their popularity, money, and status, they're prone to loneliness and unhappiness. I think there's more to the equation of fulfillment, and we're all looking to discover what works for us. I don't believe stuff like Facebook is the key, but if other's do, more power to them.
Well, start with reading your list. That's a nice list of reasons to hate Facebook. People shouldn't have to tip toe around abusive data harvesting and dark patterns... Your list sounds like a symptom, not a solution.
>Dont use your real name, gender, nationality, etc. Just create a random identity
I'd be willing to pay a small subscription fee for a social network that respects my privacy, doesn't track everything I do, and doesn't constantly bombard me with crap. Problem is, I'm in the minority. People everywhere claim to care about privacy but they actually don't :)
I find it better than connecting with people though Facebook. Facebook chooses what I get to see and not see, and I really don't care about the "news" or the memes from pages my friends and family like.
I spent a bit of time thinking about what I want to get out of Facebook.
- Social pulse - What are people talking about these days?
- Interesting/new content/new perspective/taking advantage of the echo chamber etc
- Keeping track of the very few physically-distant people that I care about
- Share some content that I think people would benefit from and wouldn't come across otherwise
- Buying/selling rarely in the marketplace
- Quick diary where I can store stuff that I found interesting
I took a few steps to get what I wanted out of the platform.
- Follow only the people that post content I might be interested in. It includes people that somewhat think like me and some that have very different opinions.
- Follow some of the content aggregation sites
- I only post content that is fit for public consumption except when I rarely share a photo of my kids/family
- Moved the FB app from the first screen to the last
How it has helped me.
- Cut down my usage by about 90%
- I am less concerned about privacy issues when it comes to FB as there isn't much on there that I wouldn't say out loud in public
- I kinda get a broad spectrum of how people are feeling about an issue
- More quality content than I used to get before. One of my favourite features on FB is "Save post". When I have a few minutes, I find stuff from my saved list or Pocket to read/watch.
- I see more photos of the people that I actually like rather than memes and quotes
I am pretty okay with how social media is involved in my life now.
Whereas there are points in this article that make sense, I don't really understand why they're singling out Facebook as toxic. For many, Facebook is just another feed and not necessarily for social media posts.
Read, negative toward my side of the politics.
Why do you think they mean only negative towards their side?
So you mean basically every political campaigns? Not sure how in touch you are with local politics, but the local political TV ads I see every night have been like this for years
Now we're discussing Facebook, because it just recently gained so much of this power, and it seems to be uniquely good at causing these negative symptoms.
The only solution I came up with was to quit cold turkey. Fortunately, I also moved to a different city at the same time; so, it was easy psychologically to say good bye to all those connections. It's been more than 5 years and I haven't used Facebook or Twitter since.
It might not be easy for you to do depending on your circumstances and honestly, some times it does lead to trouble when people use Facebook to plan or announce things that I get left out of. I did manage to find a few like minded friends though who don't use it either, so usually it's not that bad.
If you are really serious about this, quitting is the only solution I know of that works.
Facebook really has few reasons to be around anymore outside the fact that it has a lot of users.
Yes, Facebook is the "bread and circus" of the modern world. Plus, it's a dream come true for intelligence agencies, as people build their own dossiers and then make them public (or keep them within Facebook, which is pretty much the same to the intelligence agencies).
In my town the cause of the food deserts was the theft rates. There used to be groceries in the poor parts of town... It simply wasn't economical to keep them open because they couldn't make money doing so. I'm not blaming poor people for stealing per se (it's at least partly a symptom of poverty) but people make food deserts out to be some grand conspiracy on behalf of food companies when it's really caused by more emergent phenomena that are very hard to fix
modern life #someta
My friends at best post holiday photos or food... The rest is just spam, games, or those stupid quizzes things.
For more personal contact we have telegram and whatsapp groups.
Certainly this isn't the work of the russian trolls. Then who or what is behind the constant "I hate social media" spam.
I've never had a facebook account. Not a fan of facebook or zuck. But doesn't mean I going to spam social media with "I hate social media" articles.
I mean, you don't want to use it, don't. I stopped using FB for 5 years but I didn't lecture other people about it. Now I use it a lot and I don't demand that other people follow my lead.
If your job involves online marketing, being on Facebook is almost like research for one's job. And without maintaining a connection to this world, it's easy to lose touch with what other marketers are doing and rely on blog articles -- which are, oftentimes, out of date and common knowledge by the time one comes across them organically.
Conclusion: i am seasoned with linkedin, where everybody is a "winner", may be not but they try to do that. In facebook its the opposite, everybody show the worst.
Were you expecting Facebook to only suggest attractive people, if so why?