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Goodbye Facebook (thetechblock.com)
12 points by bayan09 1754 days ago | hide | past | web | 16 comments | favorite

Facebook is the one your family is on, and your family's news and personality emissions are quite literally priceless for many, many, many people. Most, even.

If you want to come for Facebook you'd better bring a bigger gun than "I'm an East Coast technopriest in my twenties who doesn't particularly care to know what browser game my great-auntie enjoys".

Like it or not, FB is ubiquitous for many. People will use it to make important announcements. "What do you mean you didn't know I was engaged? I announced it on Facebook!" The counter is that it's rude to assume everyone is on Facebook. The same, however, can be said of email or SMS.

"your family's news and personality emissions are quite literally priceless for many, many, many people. Most, even."

I wouldn't go that far. Its the technological equivalent of being shown an absolute flood of your aunt's cousin's brother's kid's meaningless crayon scrawls on construction paper and feeling socially obligated to click the like button, err, I mean pat them on the head and say that's very nice art, junior. I know very well what the "socially correct" action is, but its certainly of no actual interest to me, and frankly I'm enough of my own man to be strong enough to ignore it.

That's why most people who quit sound wishy washy in person about it, however brave they sound on the net, in order to keep the peace. Um, well, I had to quit facebook because err, ah, its blocked at work, or I used up my phone data plan or it crashes on my phone too much or whatever. Not the truth, that its really boring and I've got better ways to waste my time.

Yeah, I think once a tech product becomes entrenched enough that your grandma tries to use it on a fairly consistent basis, you've hit a "point of no return" for market share. Something eventually stabilizes as a long-term de-facto standard, and Facebook is that now for social networking. imo it's going to be difficult to break FB's grip on traditional social media uses. Before DOS/Windows became the king, there was a lot of flux in the OS/computing market, very analogous to the bi-yearly transition to a new dominating social platform.

Facebook is becoming less and less cool as more and more grandmas get accounts, but I think at the same time it's becoming harder and harder to obsolete.

Maybe I'm wrong and it will soon just be used mostly by persons of limited technical literacy while the more involved people switch to a shinier alternative. I often compare Facebook to Windows, but there's quite a different barrier to switching an OS and switching a social media site.

"Now, six years since I created a real Facebook page, mine is deactivated and I couldn’t be happier."

"Deactivated" is very different from killing an account outright. If you ever accidentally sign into another app/site using Facebook, your account will instantly reactivate (whether you realize it or not - they don't warn you). Playing Words with Friends? You'll need to decouple your FB account entirely or your FB account will suddenly reawaken.

They make the addiction incredibly easy to slip back into as well. During the deactivation process, you'll be presented with pictures of 4 of your friends, each saying, "Chad will miss you" or "Mike will miss you." In my case I was actually presented with a friend's pitiful dog looking up at me, and another friend's child. I was sure they were algorithmically selected (I think from the top 10% of my active friends), but I was stunned by the presentation.

It was incredible.

My guilt and apprehension was flooding me with confusion when I pulled the trigger. I felt justified for not completely killing the account outright. And, for at least 2 days, I literally felt a bit of withdrawal. ("I should have posted this picture... Maybe I should reactivate, post, then deactivate again." etc.)

That wore off quickly, and when I tell folks of my departure they often ask me about it with eyes of wonder and disbelief. It's almost like an AA club, and I meet more people like me.

Actually they do warn you after the fact -- you should get a "welcome back" email:

    Hey k3n,

    The Facebook account associated with facebook@example.org was recently reactivated.

    If you were not the one who reactivated this account, please visit our Help Center (http://www.facebook.com/help/?topic=security).

    The Facebook Team

When I first heard of Facebook, I was in high school.

Spoken like it was ages ago.. does this mean I'm old now? (to juxtapose, when I was in high school, I first heard of the WWW)

Facebook was restricted to colleges until 2005, so the story probably took place around that time.

I think more and more people will be leaving Facebook in the coming years. However, what it's the only company that ties in a bunch of services together. Sure, Twitter, I think is better for messaging, and Instagram (for now) is better for photos, but nobody is doing them all. And even though it's not GREAT on FB, it's going to be hard to take them down.

No problem if people want to leave FB, don't use it too much myself anymore. Just don't understand why everyone has to write a blog post like they are doing charting new ground when they leave.

The same reason people declare they are quitting smoking... Social pressure helps people break addictions.

With the right amount of willpower you can stop using these services... I haven't been on facebook in over 2 years, and it's increased my productivity drastically. I also avoid services that require me to sign up with Facebook, I hate lock-in and I won't be a part of it. Long live the open web!

all hail neckbeard fatalerrorx3

it's about time, this article really convinced me to get rid of mine.

On a side note, I'm a regular Facebook user who just stopped using the service completely. Trust me, you should quit Facebook, if you are-

1) Working on a product/idea/startup

2)Trying to be more productive

3)Wanting to spend some time with REAL people

This advice is from a fellow HN member who fell for the addiction and would update an average of 1 status per day.

BEFORE you quit Facebook, you need to find the pointers that lead you to it.

Pointer #1 - Frequently visited links

If you are on Chrome (or Firefox or Opera or IE), find out a way to delete the Facebook shortcut that appears the moment you open a new tab. By doing this, you will be able to reduce approx. 60% of your urge to use the service. Meaning, if you thought about visiting facebook 100 times on an average a day, you would visit it only 40 times (previously you visited it all the 100 times).

What you're doing here is basically making it difficult (or rather creating a tiny hurdle or bad user experience) such that you would have time to think twice before you visit the service.

Pointer #2 - Deactivate your facebook account temporarily

(Under Account->Security->Deactivate->This is temporary, I'll be back)

This way, even if you typed www.facebook.com in your address bar, you would be taken to the login page (or homepage) instead of being taken directly to your feed (your worst enemy!). since there's nothing engaging about the homepage nor the login page, you would feel hesitant to login (with due course of time) and you would come back to doing whatever you were doing before. Promise yourself that you will spend no longer than 2 seconds on the login page.

You will be surprised, how such a tiny action could help you overcome this addiction for a LONG period of time.

NOW. Wait for about 3-4 days. The temptation to login would have gone, but not completely. So, to erase it completely, login again AFTER 4-5 days. Look at your feed. By now, you would start to feel it's become (sort of) irrelevant since you were no longer staying updated with it. You will also have NO notifications. Generally, the motivation to login is to look at that tiny red piece of notification icon. But now that that is gone, you will feel 'disappointed' (I swear you will) and you will lose interest in the service. Now deactivate again. Login after a good 10-12 days. Repeat this and rinse. But increase the time period from 10 days to 20 days and keep on increasing. In a matter of 1-2 months, you would have learnt to ignore the service and master yourself. Just keep this in mind, whenever you login to the service, promise yourself not to spend more than 5 mins. If you do so, 'punish' yourself by de-activating your account and not logging into the service for a couple of days.

Hope this helps! It worked well for me :D


The attitude of needing to completely delete your facebook (or permanantly remove oneself from any frequently visited site) has always astounded me. It seems to come down to a problem of self-control and lack of other passionate things to fill one's day with.

Personally I find myself constantly loading facebook/reddit/HN when I'm bored and not interested in my current work. Simply deleting your presence seems to be treating the symptoms, not the cause.

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