Why I Won't Delete My Facebook Account

Friday, August 5, 2011
Every so often, I notice a status update in my Facebook feed from someone stating that they are deleting their Facebook account, or taking a break from Facebook, or giving Facebook up for Lent, etc.  I'll be honest...I've had a Facebook account for awhile (I think 2007?), but at the time I joined I remember that it seemed everyone else had already made the switch over from Myspace.  I actually felt like I was a late adopter.  I was resistant at first...but gradually grew to like how easy it was to upload pictures, find out what my friends were up to (my family were all much later adopters...in fact, my brother just dove in this past May), and keep track of the organizations and stores I like.
The concept of giving up your Facebook account (whether permanently or temporarily) is one I just can't wrap my head around.  It actually makes me sad when I read that someone is stepping away and I'll tell you why.  First off, I should mention that it hasn't nothing to do with Facebook itself.  I'm not singing the praises of Facebook, Inc.; it just happens to be the current platform that people are using to stay connected. I have been able to connect with friends and family on Facebook that I haven't seen or heard from in years.  Honestly, if I hadn't found them on Facebook, I probably wouldn't have ever seen or heard from many of them again.  Some may say that that alone is a reason to get rid of your account...if you weren't going to have those people in your life in the first place, why bother?  I say that is exactly why you should bother.  I am grateful to have all of these people (that means you!) in my life again...even if just virtually.  I live far away from my hometown.  Getting glimpses of life from back home, even in snippets 420 characters or less, is fuel for the soul.  Hearing about new babies, career moves, and accomplishments makes me proud.  Reading about other mamas dealing with temper tantrums or sleepless nights helps me get through the day.  Funny links or Facebook pranks make me laugh.  I even love to read your new recipes and book suggestions (and you know I post enough of these myself, so I hope you love them too...).
Sometimes people say the reason they are giving up their Facebook account is because they would rather connect with people in person or on the phone.  I personally think that is a crappy reason to delete your account.  What about your friends who don't live in your same town (or even if they do live in your same town, but work nights/live 40 miles away (hey, it can happen in Houston!)/etc. and can never see you), but would still like to be a part of your life?  As much as I would like to connect with you face-to-face, unless you're buying me a plane ticket, it isn't going to happen.  And phone calls?  Who has time for that?  If I had to connect with all of my friends (or even just the close ones!) on a regular basis on the phone, I would literally have no time for anything else and would have to hire a nanny for my children.  The obvious argument here is, "if you can't make time to call them, are they really someone you want to keep in your life anyway?"  And my answer is YES.  I DO want you in my life, but I am probably not going to make the time in my schedule to call you every week (or month...I am pretty bad about phone calls in general).
Another reason I've seen for giving up "The Facebook" is that it is a huge time suck.  I agree; it can be.  But really...that is an easy fix.  Delete your phone app, games, whatever you need to do...but keep your friends.  Your inability to manage your time on the internet is not a valid reason to cut people off from your life. (Too harsh?  Sorry.)  Again, I'd like to point out the obvious argument-"maybe I want to cut people off from my life.  Maybe I'm tired off sharing details about my life with everyone and their mom."  Again...I think that is a crappy reason.  That is where trimming your friends list to people you DO care about and want to keep informed about your life could be useful.  I realize that offering that advice could get me cut from some lists...and honestly, that will make me sad.  But, if that keeps you connected to the people you really do care about, then by all means, cut-cut.
I realize this sounds like a huge advertisement for Facebook.  But honestly, I don't really care if it's Facebook or Google+ or Myspace (ok, probably not MySpace...), I just want some way to stay connected to my friends.  And right now, Facebook is "the" way to do that.  So, please consider keeping your account.  I (and many others) would truly miss you if you leave.  That's why we're your friends; we like you in our lives.  So trim your friends lists, cut your games, hide your annoying ad pages, and keep us in the loop.  Thanks.

2 comments:

  1. Amen! I'm glad to be back in touch with you.

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  2. I totally agree. FB has a time and a place and it has allowed us to reconnect with extended family and friends that were once very close but grew apart as we got older (ahem, you :) I'm glad to see where and what old friends are doing and all of the new babies!

    ReplyDelete

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