Ditched Facebook for a month, nobody noticed

I wouldn't call Facebook sabbaticals a trend, but I've seen a couple of people take them recently. Much like a New Year's promise - no alcohol for me in January!

Anyway, I decided completely quitely to just not go to Facebook about a month ago. I had a couple of purposes: mostly to wean myself, as I sometimes get into these fully unproductive "must refresh Facebook to see if anyone says anything interesting" -states, but also to see if anyone noticed or cared. Today I finally cracked and asked the wife, if she's noticed my absence. "No, but I did wonder a bit why you've never seen any links", she told me. My tweets do go to Facebook, so that probably kept up the appearance of me participating, but I didn't read any comments, wall posts, respond to friend requests, event invites or private messages.

Facebook is social software, yes, 'cos it gets better the more people use it (kudos to Matt Jones for this). But if I wouldn't answer my phone or talk to anyone or attend a regular hobby for a month, I would really hope someone would notice and at least ask what is going on. But in the hypersocial atmosphere of Facebook, it is enough to just make noise to fake a persona. No actual interaction is required. And there is so much noise that the loss of one voice means nothing - there are a billion others ready to step up to join the chorus of social cacophonia.

Of course, I am not an important person, and I would expect only a handful of people to really care about hearing from me. But yet... Social software like Facebook and Twitter are pretty much the only contact I have with people these days (you know, small kids keep you busy). I don't think it's really contact though; just reflections from random angled surfaces.

(Oh yeah, and about my other target: I'm getting a lot more done. Or to be specific, I've been a bit more relaxed and a bit more focused, so I feel better. Absence of distractions good. Haven't yet really decided if I'm going back to FB. Probably I'll start popping by every now and then and go away if I notice myself spending too much time in there.)

((Also, I started a simple Tumblr blog where I try to post some thinglinked space images every now and then.)


It's probably worth noting that given the way Facebook displays status updates from people, even if I notice I don't see anything from you (I didn't), my first thought wouldn't be "man, I wonder where Janne is," it'd be "thanks for fucking with my feed again, Facebook."

--Mikki, 05-Jul-2012

"It gets better if more people use it". Maybe… but "people don't get better if they use it more" :)

--karl, 05-Jul-2012

Mikki: indeed - our communication is now mediated by algorithms who decide which of us should know about each other. Scary, eh?

--JanneJalkanen, 05-Jul-2012

Mikki said "It's probably worth noting that given the way Facebook displays status updates from people" but I don't think so, you can see what happened in France 1 week ago, with the big Facebook's bug!

--bracelet, 02-Oct-2012

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