Unfriend Me, Please; Unsure About Social Media


I am still harboring some old tech fears that I am dealing with. Once, when Big A* was a little boy and I was home alone on a dark, rainy afternoon, I heard mumbling sounds coming from his bedroom. Seems his “hungry” Tamagotchi (his handheld, digital pet) had awakened his Furby (his electronic robotic toy). My motherly instincts were at odds with the fact that these were not the most attractive of pets and I panicked.

Now that I am a Blogger, I felt that I had to get up to speed. Everything I read said that Facebook was my road to success. Armed with every idiot’s guide printed, and attending all the classes available (I am now on a first name basis with the entire staff at my local library), my Type A personality, which insists I know everything about a topic before I proceed, was not helping the situation.

But, then I thought of that old Nike slogan “Just do it!” and decided to proceed. I did get waylaid when I felt it necessary to check my phone and accidentally hit the FaceTime button, seeing my face, as I guess it looks first thing in the morning. I’m not sure how long it will take me to get that image out of my head.

I was not intending to get too chummy with Facebook; just create a business page for my blog and be on my way. But, it seems that in order to have a business page, you must first create a personal profile. With no way out of it, I put together a cryptic assemblage of non information and still felt uneasy, hoping not to hear from the lunch ladies at my grade school or all the insurance salesmen I went to high school with. I thought it would be fun to look up a few people, but I felt as if I were peeking through their blinds and watching them without them knowing it.

Now all I had to do was convince my Facebook friends to like my business page and I was all set. My finger hovered over the friend finder, realizing that this one click would start an avalanche of friend requests, newsfeed posts, photos, videos, status updates, algorithms, etc. and I just couldn’t do it. Instead, I deleted my business page and my personal profile.

I’ve read that many celebrities have decided to sign off all social media (George Clooney said he’d rather have a colonoscopy). Some very successful bloggers have stated that they focus on what matters to their readers, forgoing social media, stats and follower updates.

I thought about a trend that’s caught my attention lately; the plus-size model who’s challenged the fashion world, the rap artist who gives away his music away on the internet free of charge. There’s an underlying inclination out there to not follow the rules. It’s not as much a movement, as an individual gut feeling of independence, of knowing yourself and what works best for you

Would you jump off a bridge if the 1 billion Facebook users did? Or, would you happily float, unguided and unfriended, seeing where the current takes you?

Pictured: Seen on a wall in Panama City, Panama- “I don’t have Facebook. My life is real”.

*Who’s who? See “Cast of Characters” on the home page