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Cannot agree more. Quit Facebook and its sister service completely (talking about WhatsApp; never really got around to using Instagram) after the 'View As' feature exploit last year that led to 50 mil user accounts' data being exposed [0], and I must say, I've never felt more calmer, tranquil or better, mental health wise.

I feel our brains could do much better with a little less of constant bombardment of highlight-reel version of other people's lives. The psychological literature on the negative impacts of social media usage is only ballooning by the day, and there's never been a better time to quit Facebook.

[0] https://www.nytimes.com/2018/09/28/technology/facebook-hack-...

Quitting Facebook itself would help with what you are saying, but I am curious what you replaced WhatsApp/Messenger with.

For example, I have good friends in other countries, and sending pictures and short texts is one of the best ways to stay in contact. We do talk over the phone occasionally, but not having a simple way to send pictures or links would pull us much further apart.

Sure, email could be an option, but WhatsApp is just so much more convenient.

From before the Facebook acquisition WhatsApp had gotten really embedded in The Netherlands (and the rest of Europe?) as a free replacement for paid SMS service. Not only because it was free but also more convenient for sending long messages, pictures, etc. compared to the MMS hellhole.

I've been trying to get people on Signal but it's a struggle especially for older people used to WhatsApp. For a lot of them WhatsApp → Signal is a big step even though (for us) the apps are pretty much similar.

What I was curious about with GP's comment was more on the aspect of social/psychological effects of social media. I know Signal/Telegram/others could be used as a 1:1 replacement of WA/Messenger for the purpose of avoiding Facebook Inc.

I was wondering if they found some other strategy to keep in contact with their close ones without using messaging in the first place, not replacing Facebook services with some other service.

Agree. Outside the small tech bubble around me, the vast majority of people use WhatsApp for all their messaging communication.

Threema. You pay a certain modest sum and get a service. A terribly old-fashioned business model it seems... (but works for me).

Are all of your friends on it? I don't know anyone running it so it wouldn't work for me. Everyone I know is either on Messenger or Whatsapp. One friend is on Telegram, but he's also on Whatsapp.

Your friends also definitely have an email and a phone number since those are required to use Facebook.

Threema's mobile clients are closed source, while Signal and Riot are both open source and free of charge.

Telegram might be convenient, it's a middle ground between bloated Facebook things and "geeky" apps like Signal (I don't dislike it, but it's just unpopular).

I guess it depends where you are. In central europe many people have Signal and its growing (i have 40 signal contacts).

Also i dont agree at all that its more geeky. If you don't think about technical backround Signal is ux wise simpler app.

Signal or Matrix (using the Riot client, for instance).

Signal or Telegram


discord is really advanced Iove it you can do group video chat

Amen to this. I stopped using Facebook due to the same reason. If anything, my quality of life has gone up since then.

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