The Social Media Site Everybody Loves to Hate (#atozchallenge)

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You just knew I was going to say “Facebook,” right?

I know, every social media guru in the known universe (and, I swear, the number of “social media gurus” has risen exponentially over the last few years) says that if you’re a small business (e.g. a writer), ya just gotta have a presence on Facebook. I mean, there are 1.23 billion users on Facebook. In contrast, there are 243 million active Twitter users, 70 million Pinterest users, and 300 million Google+ users (and that just might be because, if you have a Google account, you get Google+ whether you want it or not). I got these numbers from Digital Marketing Ramblings’s post from less than a month ago. You might also like this article, identifying 98 amazing Facebook facts. I mean, dropping off of Facebook is cutting off your nose to spite your face, in a manner of speaking.

Well, count me as one of the noseless ones, at least until Easter Sunday. As many of you know, I gave up Facebook for Lent. I decided that I needed to concentrate on other things besides it, and was tired of getting onto Facebook at 10 AM and not getting off until after noon, then getting on it at 9 PM and being on it in some capacity until midnight or later. I know, that’s my fault. And, like Basil Fawlty, I must be punished. (The pertinent scene starts at about 1:20; the whole thing is a scream.)

I’ve noticed some effects of not being on Facebook since Ash Wednesday (this past March 5, so a month).

  • I’m sleeping better.
  • I’m not staying up as late.
  • I’m not spending as much time in front of the computer.
  • I’m getting more done (writing, blogging, reading) when I am on the computer.
  • I’m in a much better mood.
  • I don’t miss it as much as I thought I would, particularly
    • the groups whose main intention is to keep you permanently p*ssed off;
    • the people who post like squirrels on crack;
    • the p*ssing contests that erupt on the groups that I follow.

There are some things that I miss, though:

  • Facebook was my primary contact with my family, especially my brothers. Mary can’t fathom why I don’t pick up the phone and call them, but I’ll carry on long conversations with them online.
  • Facebook is also how I stay in contact with
    • my cousins, who I don’t see since I don’t travel to Chicago anymore;
    • people I used to work with;
    • friends from grammar school, high school, and college;
    • friends from LiveJournal and Fuzzy Memories, who have curtailed their posting activity on those sites in favor of Facebook.

I haven’t given up social media entirely; I’ve gotten more active on Twitter, sending the URL’s of articles in tweets to Instapaper for reading more at my leisure, and have also been better about keeping up with blogs that I follow using Feedly. So I’m not totally out of the loop.

And, I will get back to Facebook eventually. But, I’m in no hurry…

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Author: John Holton

I'm a writer and blogger who writes and blogs about things that interest me.

7 thoughts on “The Social Media Site Everybody Loves to Hate (#atozchallenge)”

  1. “a squirrel on crack” *snort* I know some people like that. I have to admit, I breeze on and off FB, never spending a large amount of time there. My time-sucker these days is Pinterest…it’s a giant, virtual corkboard.

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    1. I think any social media site can get that way, even Twitter. With Twitter, you can get so worried about missing something that you spend hours trying to go through all of the tweets, and get sidetracked with all of the articles that are attached. I’ve learned to send those links to Instapaper and read things as I get a chance.

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  2. Thanks for coming by my Facebook post! I think you raise a good point here about what you’re using it for. Is it to keep in touch with people or for people to get in touch with you? Also what people are you trying to get a hold of, family, friends, long lost people from your past? It all plays a part in the decision to keep it or let it go. As you know, I have no plans to get one anytime soon 😛

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    1. What bothers me more is all of the “social media experts” implying that you’ll never sell a book unless you’re on Facebook, Twitter, Google+, Instagram, Pinterest, etc., etc. I’m well aware of the need to promote your own work, but that’s overkill. As I said, it’s great to keep in touch with people, but as a marketing tool? I’m not so sure. Thanks for stopping by!

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