I think it’s fair to say I’ve had a bit of a ‘love/hate’ relationship with Facebook over the years. From being someone who posted his entire life online, I’ve become someone who now tuts when Facebook is mentioned in polite company.
I’m not sure if I’ve time today to list all the reasons I’ve come to dislike Facebook, but their cavalier attitude to data protection and privacy are up there at the top. I didn’t install the Facebook app on any of my most recent devices and only access the site weekly via my browser.
A very quick check in to see family photos and see if I’ve been ‘tagged’ in any stupid quizzes or invited to in any pointless groups. The attraction is basically gone and it’s now a chore for me.
I briefly posted to friends that I was leaving this morning. I’ve downloaded all my data. And later this evening, I’ll press the button and completely deactivate my account. And it will feel good.
You’re possibly wondering how I can live with the inherent tension of maintain multiple blogs and using various social media channels, while simultaneously deleting Facebook. None of the others cause such a visceral revulsion in me, to be honest. Even though it might seem otherwise, it’s not a legal requirement to have a Facebook account!
I’m sure I’ll survive just fine.
Will I continue to use WhatsApp and Instagram? At the moment, yes. Until Apple opens its messages app to Android users, WhatsApp is the only way I can stay in touch with some of my friends. Especially those in Asia.
And despite its ownership, I don’t hate Instagram. The content is never problematic and the accounts I follow bring a smile to my face. It’s an indescribably different experience to Facebook.
Maybe, in time, I’ll leave these too. For now, they’ll remain on my phone and we’ll see what future developments bring.
But with Google taking UK users’ data offshore (thanks, Brexit) I may have to look more closely at my use of Google’s services before getting too stressed out about my Instagram habit…