I deleted by Google+ account(s) recently, as well. I have several Twitter accounts with no tweets. I'm thinking of sanitizing my LinkedIn account soon.
It's not that I'm anti-social (well, maybe); I am just one of those elder geeks who once dreamt of truly federated services under one's own control.
> a G+ account was forced on me again
To be clear, a G+ account is a Google account. It ties together all Google properties. Just seems bizarre to use these and consider G+ as being forced on you - it is just your Google account. One doesn't need to actually use the social features provided by one's Google account.
What the world needs is a club for anti-social people, to (mis?)quote Ashleigh Brilliant.
I very much share your perspective. I never bought into the Facebook madness, tried G+ very briefly under my real name, then decided that wasn't a good idea. I've since withdrawn virtually completely from it though I may use it to help promote my writing elsewhere.
One thing I've found as I look to alternatives is that much of the infrastructure for a federated system already exists. Blogs, RSS/Atom, image hosting, and a very few other pieces, would pretty much make it come together.
A slightly better integrated messaging infrastructure is the primary missing bit (though there's no reason why any of the existing tools, including Jabber, AIM, or IRC, couldn't cover much of the ground).
And I'm not knocking Google for its technical execution. G+ was very well engineered (hrm: why am I referring to it in the past tense), phenomenally stable (I saw one push which broke the site in 2.5 years), and at least on the server end, performed well (the client side is another story, and I'm having to free browser memory far, far less often having left it). In terms of UI/UX and social factors ... I really found the site left a great deal to be desired.
Facebook leaves the account deactivated for a week so you can ponder on your choice, but if you don't do anything, it was my understanding that the account gets deleted.
I shared that optimistic dream for the internet back in the early days, but I think we've figure out how to make money off it now and that's going to be its undoing.
Usenet is free, doesn't provide any value anyone could easily monetize, and allows interaction with other users. That's about all I want from the Internet these days anyway.
alternatively, you could give http://www.howtoleavefacebook.com/ a try
Yes you can both deactivate (soft delete) an account and you can actually say to facebook to actually delete it. Deleting an account does not allegedly remove your data from the Facebook servers. Deleting items however will remove your data from the servers. The idea is that you should delete each little thing first, and then delete the actual account.
From the FAQ at http://suicidemachine.org/ :
"Facebook and Co. are going to hold all your informations and pictures on their servers forever! We still hope that by removing your contact details and friend connections one-by-one, your data is being cached out from their backup servers. This can happen after days, weeks, months or even years. So merely deactivating the account is just not enough!"
Why are you so sure about this?
In my mind, ideally the next big social media platform will be P2P and open source. I have some ideas on how this might work and the features this would include, but I've never hashed them out since my programming ability doesn't approach the level required for such an undertaking. Maybe I will as a thought experiment and publish my ideas so that anyone can use them.
And there are numerous nodes you can create an account on -- no need to be self-hosting. Though with FreedomBox, that would actually be pretty tenable.
One of my friends from G+ (which is to say: someone I met through G+ and started following there) has made a practice of bulk-purging his account every so often.
My own response has been to greatly curtail my activities on the site (due to Google's ever-encroaching property linkages), even though I'm already participating pseudonymously. I've hand-deleted some content, but am holding out on a broader deletion given the prospect of recovering some of my comments (presently not included in the Data Liberation Front), with some third-party tools. Though I may just pull the trigger and do a full wipe.
The fact that Google offers this option is actually somewhat commendable.
If Facebook actually wants people to be using their service in twenty years, they should really build timeline cleansing in.
Although I agree with your feature request why does it matter to you that that stuff is there? I enjoy going back through my timeline (maybe once a year or so) and seeing old things. There may be a few things that make me cringe but there's nothing so embarrassing that it would have any effect on me currently should anyone else see it.
I might be a pessimist though, I hope they add the feature.
12 hours of deleting by hand? I don't know if I could even do 20-30 minutes worth without seeking a tool.
That's dedication, or something.