I Deleted My Facebook Account Today
I cannot imagine how time flies on the the internet, how fads and fashions come and go. I have been online and working online since the early 90s (I had a pre-commercial internet account though a local provider here… on dialup!). I have seen plenty of things come and go, but it’s the last few years that there has been truly monumental ebbs and tides online.
I can remember when Hotbot and Lycos were considered the big search players, and I can remember when an AOL hosted website was still considered somewhat cool, as was having a geocities page. I remember when ICQ was that new hot idea that nobody had every seen before, and I can remember what Yahoo was a place you absolutely wanted your sites listed. The truth is that change is always in the cards, it never goes away. Rather, change is the constant that makes the internet what it is.
Facebook has certainly been one of the fast rising stars. While My Space may have been there near the start of the social media revolution, it is Facebook that has truly defined it, as hundreds of millions of people have signed up for accounts, spewing their pictures, their mindless comments, they inner thoughts, and sometimes the stupidest stuff you will ever see. It was a place where university students could meet and plan their lives, and it became a place where older people met back up after years apart, tracking down old school friends, girlfriends, and perhaps making amends with the enemies of our distant pasts.
It was great. Keyword is was, at least for me.
I met back up online with all the people I wanted to meet back up with, and found in many cases there were reasons why we were apart. I found an old girlfriend with 4 kids and knocked up with number five from baby daddy number 3. I saw my high school reunion and discovered there was nobody there I wanted to reunite with. I have some good friends online, and I have chatted with them often and even developed some good friendships. But alas, even those have waned as each of us keep at our busy lives, understanding that we are in this position of not being friends before because we just don’t have the time or desire to maintain the relationship.
Once it is all done, and everyone has said hi, and everyone has caught up, there isn’t much left to talk about. There isn’t much going on. So I, like millions of other people, have gone forward to close out and delete my account from Facebook. Simply put, I am all socialed out. My thoughts are that Facebook is already heading for it’s slow downward spiral, with more and more companies going on Facebook and more and more normal people heading for the exits, turning into perhaps another My Space or whatever you may have. It was cool once, but then again, so were mullets. Thankfully, we have all grown past that point, and we no longer have to go back there.
For those friends I leave behind on Facebook, don’t worry, it isn’t because of you. Well, it is – because Facebook is a wonderful tool that has let me relive my schooldays, and I enjoyed doing it. But I can’t ride that ride every day, and it’s time for me to move along. Perhaps in another 20 years we can all jump into our star trek teleporters and enjoy a coffee in Rome and look back and laugh at Facebook. But for now, don’t laugh too loud, because many people haven’t yet gotten the joke.
Update 2015: It’s a long time later, and after relocating to the other side of the world and needing to be in touch with some people, I have relented and created a new Facebook profile. However, this time around I have been very selective about who is on my friends list, and I don’t bother looking for people from my past just to find them. The reality is that the past is the past, and when we stop living in it, we live better in the future.