Where Will You Land?

As Facebook comes crumbling down and the mass exodus begins, what platform will people move to that doesn’t control them so algorithmically?

I looked at Diaspora a while ago. It’s worth another look. From a technical perspective I like that it’s decentralized and owned by the users. Plus all the users legally own their own data.

It doesn’t need ad revenue to survive, so that’s good.

Also I could run my own server on the network if I wanted to.

Or — hey — there’s always the original social network, ham radio.

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Why I Don’t The Facebook Much Anymore

Here are some things I have come to believe about Facebook:

  • It is not acting in your best interest.
  • It creates a false sense of community.
  • Its algorithms are actively trying to manipulate you.
  • It is addictive.
  • It is toxic.
  • It promotes tribalism.
  • It appeals to our baser instincts.
  • It does not challenge you.
  • It does not inspire personal growth.
  • It makes a lot of money off of you.
  • It learns from you.
  • Its relationship with you is based on a great imbalance of power.
  • It shows you what it thinks you want to see.
  • It is a closed system.
  • It does not share its data.
  • Its program is designed to keep things inside the “walled garden.”
  • It is constantly watching everything you do with it.
  • Its creators will do whatever it takes to remain in power.
  • It is not accountable.
  • It has no oversight.
  • It has no regulation.
  • It is actively rearranging your neural pathways to become dependent on it.
  • It needs you.
  • It is easily gamed.

The irony is that many of you may have linked to this article from Facebook. Although, knowing my (lack of) activity on it recently, it is difficult to predict how its algorithms will interact to bring viewers and clicks away from itself and onto my blog here.

On Original Sentiment

Facebook – at least my Facebook feed – is turning into a bunch of advertising for brands and products via people ‘liking’ them, 1+ day old meme posts that were already reposted on Reddit, and cutesy videos. Where’s the original content?

Wait, I don’t care. Aside from the “my birthdays” spam that happens to infiltrate my email somehow, Facebook is all about me. Or rather it’s all about you. This blog is all about me. But for you it’s like going to a library or buying a subscription (remember RSS?). You don’t have to see it unless you want to. Just like I don’t have to see everyone by ignoring Facebook.

Walled gardens and all that. The U.S. Government is less restrictive on free speech than Facebook is.

And where’s the original content? Let me answer my own question. Facebook owns it. No wonder nobody posts anything good there. (Anymore or ever?)

The only thing Facebook is good for is to ask people what their contact info is so I can update my address book. Oh yeah, where is that service already?

In case you didn’t get it, say the first two words of the title fast.

 

Rant On, Rant Off: Facebook Notifications Be Dammed

Okay, let me just rant for a minute here. I have turned off ALL notifications from Facebook to my email. And when I say ALL, I mean ALL notifications. I don’t want to get a single email from Facebook saying I have to go to their site and read a message. I want to manually type “facebook.com” into my browser’s address bar and peruse messages, notifications, invites, pokes, picks, pukes, punks, plucks, pucks, and porks when it’s convenient for me. Which means maybe once a day or so.

At this point you may be thinking, “He’s pretty anti-Facebook. Why is he even on it?” I’m not anti-Facebook. I like keeping my friends in a tidy little relatively self-organizing corner of the Internet. And the “why is he even on it” thing? Are you serious? How can you not have a presence on Facebook nowadays?

Anyway, the whole point of this rant is that I consciously and deliberately disabled all email notifications from Facebook. That took quite a few clicks. Then out of the blue I get a notification from a group that I was added to. Without my permission. Seriously, Facebook? You let people add me to groups without my permission? Where’s the “ask first” checkbox in the settings when it comes to that stuff? Did I miss something? I may have. Facebook changes more frequently than a whore on a hot summer night. I don’t know what that means.

Facebook seems to have this history of trying to do semi-sleazy things with your profile data. Like the several times you automatically get opted-in to features such as using your personal data on ads that appear on your friend’s screens. That was a no-no. And other little examples. They automatically assume everyone wants their new “features” automatically. Think the other way around, Facebook.

They’re also a bit of a walled garden, but I won’t go into that for now.

So just stop sending me countless emails of the pointless prattle that people perpetually post. Period.