After weeks of reconsidering, I have stopped using Facebook. After taking an objective look at how much time I was spending on it and how it affected my mood and productivity, I can’t justify the benefits it provides anymore. While I haven’t yet taken this step myself, I would like to share with you some of the ways that quitting Facebook has affected me and why I hope you’ll consider removing this unnecessary distraction from your life as well. Here are a few reasons I won’t be back any time soon to Facebook…
The social media overload
We’ve all been there. It seems like every time you log onto your social media account, there’s something new. Your friends post updates constantly, and it can be hard to keep up. Before you know it, you’re spending more time on social media than you intended, and before long, those little beeps are driving you crazy! Deactivating or deleting your accounts may not be for everyone, but if you’re overwhelmed by constant distractions from social media, it might just be worth a try.
The loss of control over personal information
As time has gone on, we’ve all watched helplessly as major Internet companies have grown in size and popularity while becoming increasingly Orwellian in their handling of our data. This loss of control over personal information is easy to see but hard to quantify. That’s why it can be a powerful motivator for people looking to delete their accounts with these services and get their lives back.
Algorithms that spread fake news
If you use social media, you know how easy it is to see what your friends are up to—but that ease can come at a cost. If you’re seeing all sorts of news stories and photos (especially political stuff) from people who have nothing in common with you, fake news sites may have been using algorithms to spread rumors that their readers are more likely to share.
You’re not what you post.
These days, many of us post regularly about what we’re doing, where we’re going, and who we’re with. But our online persona is often misleading—the reality isn’t always as pretty as it seems. If you aren’t careful, you can easily fall into a self-centered rut that undermines your relationships in real life. Or worse: When you start comparing yourself to others on social media, you can quickly end up feeling inadequate or even depressed.
The number one reason people delete their Facebook accounts is privacy issues. It’s no secret that social media sites like Facebook and LinkedIn collect a lot of information about their users to help tailor advertisements. While there are positives to targeted advertising—it can lower prices for consumers—many users are concerned about how much information they give up in exchange for those low prices.
What about you?
The decision to leave Facebook is difficult, but it’s an important one. If you’re interested in deleting your account, download your data. This way, you can take all of your information with you when you decide to part ways with Facebook forever. And for Google index’s sake; make sure to delete every single post, like, and comment; any trace of your existence on that platform is something that can be used against you later.
Cover photo by Mohamed Nohassi on Unsplash.