It's an election year, and you know what that means: An uptick in Facebook un-friending!
Like any presidential race that has occurred during the age of social media, people's true colors come out to play, and political debates rage on through never-ending comment threads. This leads to the inevitable dissolving of "friendships" across the global platform that is Mark Zuckerberg's billion-dollar baby.
But other than a low tolerance for your political tirades, there are other reasons why I seriously considered taking a (temporary) break from Facebook, which has over the years become a tiresome hub of unwarranted opinions, presumptuous posts, and blatant reminders that your life isn't as fabulous as you yourself have let on. By now, it's become blatantly obvious why anyone below the age of 20 has fled for greener pastures like Snapchat, Vine, and Instagram: Facebook has become a forum full of parents and childless adults who use it as a soapbox (and free ad space) on a near-daily basis.
And I am just as guilty because I will, without hesitation, swiftly post a link to this blog on Facebook as soon as I hit "Publish."
LET'S BE REAL HERE: I will not be deleting my Facebook account anytime in the foreseeable future because a part of what I do for a living relies on having a platform to produce and promote content. (Just for the record, I refuse to call myself a "content creator," an oh-so-Millennial term that is being thrown around nowadays to basically describe anyone with a blog, a Vine account, or a video camera.) And yes, I will admit that most of what I share can be a plea for validation, whether subconsciously or not. As much as I bitch and whine about certain people's status updates, I am a part of the problem too.
But the temptation to break up with Facebook was there at one point. Perhaps I said it after a few glasses of wine at the end of a rough week at work: "Ugh, to hell with Facebook! Why do I need to check in on what people are up to? People suck!" Glug, glug, glug...
Here are some reasons why I wanted to pull the plug:
1. I don't want to see you share something that I've seen seven times before...five months ago.
2. Your Aunt Mildred keeps sending me Candy Crush requests.
3. Your insistence on sharing cat videos is waste of my time. I mean, I could be watching adorable puppy videos instead, for God's sake.
4. Your rants are unoriginal and uncalled for...although you'll probably go ahead and criticize this one.
5. I can't stand to see you repeat the phrase "This just might be my new favorite thing ever!"
6. You refuse to be creative when it comes to vacation photos and post the same, cliched shots of your legs lounging under the sun. Also...
6a. It's time to retire the caption "my office for today" when taking shots of a gorgeous view of a beach, a foreign city, or a picturesque desert landscape.
7. The click-baiting articles you share are reductive.
8. That said, I find videos with titles like "This Man Slit His Throat In A Supermarket" to be highly offensive and unnecessary for sharing on people's news feeds. Whereas "Naked Bodybuilder on a Treadmill in Stilettos Goes Viral" is just desperate.
9. While I applaud your achievements (I really do) and support you wanting to hold yourself accountable for your health, I cannot tolerate another shot of you posing in the same workout gear (or checking in) at the following:
a.) Tough Mudder
c.) that half-marathon you trained for
d.) that triathalon you trained for
e.) that sweatbox you call a yoga class
f.) that spin class
10. You don't know how to hashtag.
11. You're a Debbie Downer who doesn't know how to let up on the "woe is me" status updates. Facebook isn't your therapist, dear. People's comments and likes will not serve you best in the long run.
12. The more you post about your "boo" or "bae," the more concerned I am about the true nature of your relationship. And this isn't coming from a bitterly jealous singleton. There's actually been studies which demonstrate how oversharing one's love life on social media is a sign of insecurity. So think twice the next time you comment on a loving couple's post with "#relationshipgoals."
After reviewing all of this, perhaps I'm just tired of seeing the same old sh...stuff. Or maybe who I'm really frustrated with is...myself. Because deep down inside, I know I too feed into the endless cycle of social feed interactions; I'm an active cog that is keeping the machine going, and even though I'd like to stop, I just can't.
It's just that there's also a lot of stupid crap that has been floating around, and it makes me genuinely concerned for the planet. For instance, these tweeted reactions to the rousing cast performance of Broadway's Hamilton at the Grammys:
But I like to think I've learned how to shut out that innocuous noise and focus on the things that matter. I shouldn't let this trivial shit get to me. I shouldn't sweat the proverbial small stuff...
Ooh, look! My photo with a celebrity got retweeted 12 times!