What I’ve Learned from Facebook

Some days I call Facebook a necessary evil. You want to look up a rating of some business, other than Yelp? FB is your answer. Other days, I  throw some expletives in there and that is all I can bring myself to say about it. I cannot remember exactly when I signed up for Facebook, but I gather it was sometime when I was in college. Mind you, this was long before smart phones. Admittedly, I spent some days scrolling through feed, on my desktop computer, stalking friends and classmates (don’t get snobby here, you cannot deny at first you did too.)
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I maybe posted photos with friends and perhaps a few spicy pics ( don’t get too excited, spicy for me might be a slightly fitted, v-neck L.L. Bean T-shirt.) It took me quite some time to figure out that Facebook was NOT good for me. It was occupying too much of my time and I was comparing myself a bit too much to my former classmates who were already doctors, lawyers or perfect busy stay-at-home moms. SO, I QUIT. I left Facebook for a good 8 or 9 years. Fast forward to the wedding last year. Here’s a new family from out of town who wanted to stay in touch. Better believe the pressure got to me. They said “oh but you’ll miss the cute photos of kid as he grows up.” Damn she was right. It happened soon after that – I signed up shortly after the new year.

Welcome 2016. My how  Facebook has changed and it hasn’t. People still use the platform for complaining, bragging and whining. They are constantly professing their love for each other (but really isn’t saying it to the person in private more meaningful?)
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They also use it for promotion and sharing positive energy (which I appreciate A LOT). I enjoy reading articles from numerous sources that I might not be able to access in print. Some of the photos are wonderful to look at – babies growing up, cute dogs posing and of course amazing vacation photos! Sometimes I travel the world just looking at my feed. BUT I do wonder if people are actually enjoying vacation when they are spending so much time uploading photos?!

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This new Facebook snoops on me a lot more (for example. there’s an ad in my feed for a product I looked up on Amazon 24 hours ago). It is also now platform for a gazillion multilevel marketing/pyramid selling programs. I had NO idea how many of the schemes are out there until I rejoined FB. It is amazing what people are selling – weight loss cures, magic makeup, neck skin tightener, stretch mark remover etc. It is despicable really. Doesn’t anyone know you can do these things on your own? You can workout at a gym or like us, we workout at home or walk outside where the fresh air is free  and plentiful. You can buy your own makeup and apply it without someone telling you how. Try a LIBRARY. Read a BOOK. That is usually my approach. And that is usually my answer when I feel as if I have spent too much of Facebook. I turn the device off and crack open a book. Although Facebook is still busy tracking my location and what I just Googled, I at least can enjoy my book freely.

 

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