Why I Killed My Facebook Account

Many Facebook users are in an uproar over new changes, while bigger ones are about to be unveiled. I’ve had a Facebook account since 2005. Today, I killed it. Didn’t just deactivate it, but deleted it. The whole kit-and-kaboodle. Why?

It’s Not User-Friendly
I never complained much about the constant design changes. That’s the nature of technology and the Internet. In the beginning, the reason I loved Facebook over Myspace was its clean design. No glaring graphics, no ugly text. Now Facebook looks like a flashing Las Vegas neon sign.

Personal vs. Professional
Who are my “friends”? A lot of my co-workers are both friends and Facebook friends. Professional colleagues are Facebook friends. Family members are Facebook friends. Classmates from high school are Facebook friends–but many are not “real” friends–you know, these are the people who would never talk to you in high school, but for some reason want to be your Facebook friend! I just got tired of all of the different dividing lines. What to post and to whom? I know I could create different groups/lists. But really, it’s just a hassle. For the people I really do like: my co-workers, family members, and friends – I don’t need Facebook to stay in touch.

Privacy
This is the real stinker for me. Facebook had way too many privacy settings that seemed to change every month. And you always had to “opt out.” Sharing was automatic. No thank you. And now there are creepy things like this [update: Facebook has changed the timeline to avoid outing "unfrienders" - well at least that's one good thing!]. This is what it all comes down to: Facebook is NOT about me or my friends. It’s about my data and how advertisers can market to me.

Do I think Facebook is important to libraries. Absolutely! Again, there’s that marketing aspect. But I’ll be using a “dummy” account to manage my library’s Facebook page.

Ultimately, I decided that I don’t want to live my life on Facebook. I want to live it in real life. That’s my call. I decide when and to whom I communicate with. I control the information. Facebook does not.

If you haven’t read these articles, check them out:

Not Sharing is Caring: Facebook’s Terrible Plan to Get Us to Share Everything We Do on the Web – Slate

Is Facebook Trying to Kill Privacy – Mashable

I Deleted My Facebook Account – Maxistentialism

Updated:

Excellent post from ReadWriteWeb – The New Facebook: 3 Major Implications

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4 thoughts on “Why I Killed My Facebook Account

  1. Very interesting perspective. I am not happy with all the changes FB has made either, and the only thing that keeps me from getting rid of it is the fact that I use FB to stay in touch with family and friends in my home country.

  2. Especially now that we can compare Facebook to newer services such as Google+ and Disapora, which I think have a better focus on privacy (and better design).

  3. If your complains were rectified by FB, would you go back? Or, more accurately, do you think it is even possible for FB to make those changes?

    • Grr…I ended up having to *re-open* my Facebook account when I realized I had family members that I had no other way to contact. However, I removed myself from the profile search to ‘hide’ myself. I don’t check it that much, but it’s there if I need it. So much for my little experiment!

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