Monday, 24 October 2016

My overtly dramatic life without Facebook: Day Two

What a surprise to find that a few of you actually still have little old me on your blog feeds! I'm honoured (and extremely grateful that I survived any mass culls of dormant blog spaces). Having said that, I do pride myself on being the Winona Ryder of the blog world - I always bounce back (boredom depending)..... and here I am. Anywho, it was nice of you to stop by; though I always read your blogs so it almost feels like I never went anywhere.

So ... moving on to day two without Facebook. I'd love to divulge some hyperbolic statement about how I rolled over this morning, finger poised on the Facebook app ready to start my morning routine but I'd be lying. Realistically, I haven't missed it one bit. I instinctively went to open the app once today, thought to be honest I think it was more accidental thinking it was Twitter. Feel free to believe what you wish; whichever option proves to be the source of the most gripping drama.

I'm also pleased/worried/disappointed that a grand total of 0 'friends' appear to have noticed my absence. Clearly I am overwhelmed with pure joy knowing just how much I bring to their lives. I've been careful not to engage in any Facebook related conversation, eradicating the need to blurt out that, in a fit of pure mental delusion, I removed myself from the cyber party. That'd go down well. I can almost visualise the blank expressions now. Besides, surely telling people goes against the whole 'I'm not an attention seeking prick' scenario. No, that's not me. I'm very much a 'stealthily slip out of an open window under the cover of darkness' kind of guy..... notice I purposely left out the 'and most likely break my neck' portion of that analogy.

Life goes on though as is ever the case. I'm not sure what I expected to be honest. A barrage of text messages questioning my disappearance? A sudden life affirming notion of my purpose here on earth? Peasants weeping at my door? Who knows. None of those things have happened though. Yet.

One thing I do know is that there is definitely some kind of 'check Facebook' habit instilled somewhere deep inside. Much like an ex-smoker chewing on a biro, I have this constant urge to open blue coloured apps. It doesn't matter what they are ... my brain just needs them to be blue. Not that I'm complaining - so far today I've perused my toothbrushing habits over the past year via an Oral B app I never knew I had (21st century problems when our bloody toothbrushes are linked to our phones!), practically stalked the app store, attacked Twitter to the point it now struggles to keep up and established that I can get a hot dog half price at Odeon (provided it's before November 5th) thanks to O2 priority.

Quite productive if I do say so myself.

Maybe tomorrow will see some form of 'Facebookless' mental breakdown? I'm hoping so ... it's great blog material.

If said breakdown does materialise, I have a sneaking suspicion that it may be related to extreme withdrawals from Karen in Finance's nightly dinner plan updates. I've never uttered more than a passing 'hello' in real life but seriously, I miss that shit - did she end up using the surplus mange-touts from Saturday's pork stir fry? I'm on the edge of my seat just thinking about it.

I may have to ask around tomorrow....

Sunday, 23 October 2016

Deactivating Facebook


So I haven't updated for 2 whole years? I believe I've well and truly smashed the record for my own personal blogging hiatus.

I opened the browser on my desktop Mac for the first time in forever and saw that this little old slice of Interwebs was still saved to the favourites bar ... and here I am. It's probably the ideal moment to be honest (fate is mysterious and all that jazz) as I finally took the plunge and deactivated my Facebook account tonight.

It wasn't really anything dramatic and definitely not a life-affirming decision but I watched the first episode of the new series of Black Mirror last night (check it out, it's ace) and it started the ball rolling in my brain.

Facebook has been giving me some pretty negative thoughts as of late. I was sitting there the other night with a cup of tea after work, scrolling through the endless pages of pure shite and I suddenly realised that if I judged some of my 'friends' purely on the content they post online, I would definitely not still be in touch. It's strange just how many people you know and like in real life come across as complete attention-seeking cyber idiots. I thought about how the statuses they post affect how I interact with them in real life and just how much they aid in shaping my opinion. This was more apparent when it came to work colleagues - seemingly innocuous exchanges during the day revealed themselves in more dramatic context via cryptic memes and 'time for a heavy drink' oriented statuses. I would then carry this into work and handle them slightly more delicately than maybe I would have done had I not seen their midnight cries for attention. Putting it simply; my exposure to social media affected my day to day actions.

Humans are chameleons. We are able to filter and alter our exchanges based on those present, to adapt to the current situation. How chaotic would the world be if all of our thoughts were on display 24/7? Social media removes this ability. A generalised blanket comment is made and EVERYONE sees it, thus allowing them to form their own opinions and twist their own perspectives. You lose complete control when it comes to a) knowing who has digested the information and b) what their opinion may be. I'm interested in understanding what life without Facebook is like (even if only for a short time) and whether it causes me to look at anything differently. Will I spend less time thinking about whether the current moment is 'share worthy' and focus on it's enjoyment? Will it cause me to converse directly more and share more of an interest in my friends' lives? Will people make the effort to converse more with me? Will I take less photos (probably not)? More to the point, will I start to take people on face value once again?

Even if my little experiment has little to no impact, I'm sure a welcome break from baby photos and random dinner plans will do me good. Whatever will I do to fill my time?

I doubt anyone still reads this; it's more for my own documentation more than anything else. To me, personal blogs are the internet's safe haven - wholesome slices of intelligent conversation without the need for ratings or likes. No real life connections and no danger of personal judgements or comparisons...... well, for most that is.

But if you do happen to wander by, I hope you are well and if anyone out there has undergone a similar experiment of their own, I'd LOVE to hear about it! I really don't think I'll even last the week but here goes....