Back in the 90s, I bought my first computer so I could do my EET work at home instead of dealing with finding a babysitter for the kids and drive half an hour to work on those busted old breadboards. There was a CD that came with the computer that got me on the world wide web….
America Online was *the* way to connect to the Internet back in the day. It was easy, fast simple…you didn’t have to figure anything out. You just stuck the CD in the CD drive, it installed, it made the modem start making those weird sounds and then you were able to surf and also get into AOL chat rooms.
That was the only reason I was on AOL, the chat rooms. The ability to talk to all sorts of different people was so awesome to me.
When I figured out that I could skip all the crazy bloated software and advertising that gave me all those “free” hours by paying a local ISP to get online…that’s what I did. It wasn’t easy, there was some configuration, and I had to figure out how to still talk to people without connecting through AOL, but I did it. I broke free from the mammoth advertising company that was blocking me from the real world while it tracked every move I made.
Sounds a lot like Facebook, doesn’t it?
I’m leaving Facebook for many of the same reasons. Facebook is absolutely intrusive and downright scary when it comes to privacy. But Facebook is also a bit of a time suck, and if your attention is only on what Facebook’s algorithms think you should be paying attention to…what are you missing?
I’m ready to find out.
Soon after I post this blog post, I’ll cancel my Facebook account. I’m not sure how long it will take for my account to be deleted, but I’m sure I’ll live on as a ghost in the machine because when you leave Facebook doesn’t delete all of your info. I’m not sure how many of my apps won’t work because they are connected to Facebook. I’m not sure what sort of emotional jolt this will be to my system either.
When I left AOL, it was so freeing. I met so many more people, and was exposed to many new ideas and cultures. I’m crossing my fingers that will happen again.
For those of you I’m leaving on Facebook, here’s how to contact me:
email: gina dot minks at gmail dot com
See y’all on the other side!