If you send something, it is sent. If God sends it, it is godsent. Since when do we have to “sic” a perfectly nice word like that, Mister Immiserate?
Baffled by both this BB article and the article to which it links. The “problem” of having too many friends/groups/likes/whatevers is solved either by dropping those particular friends/groups/likes/whatevers from your newsfeed or dropping them altogether. No one’s forcing you to add or keep anything. I made a point of trimming my friend list to below 100 and I’m happy as a clam. Facebook may have a whole host of problems, but this sure isn’t one of them.
You’re doing it wrong. I am with lorq in that facebook loses value the more “friends” you have. If your social circle is that big or if you are just one of those people compelled to add everyone you ever knew then, yes, you are going to get a lot of crap. And if your friends are that odious on a regular basis why are you friends with them in the first place? I have about 40 friends, including family and they are actual friends. People that if I bump into them I will ask about their weekend and otherwise engage with them. People that if it weren’t for facebook I would at least be calling them on the phone a few times a year and talking for an hour or two on the phone. This is completely a user issue, not facebook’s fault. And honestly, if facebook makes you miserable, stop using it. Also not facebook’s fault.
“No one’s forcing you”
Want to freaking bet? The 2007 article written by Cory (linked to in this article) gives several examples of when you are, for all intents and purposes, forced to add people as “friends”. Teachers are infamous for having to keep super-sanitised social media profiles, and for begging their friends to do the same, because of students, parents, and principals snooping on their private lives. I quit being a teacher before social media really took off, and even back then I wound up doing a lot of self-censorship.
Then there’s the scenario where you don’t want to deal with Crazy Cousin Cate, but your mother will make it the only topic of conversation for the forseeable future if you unfriend her. So you’re stuck with her millions of insane posts in your timeline to keep the peace.
Either you are a self-employed orphan, or in a very privileged position, if you think dropping people in social media is virtually consequence-free.
This is a common misconception - clams are, in fact, the most melancholy of all the bivalves.
(paraphrasing Calvin Trillin)
Cory “doesn’t have a Facebook account” and “doesn’t pay much attention to stories about the service,” but sure is an expert on what “the problem with Facebook is.”
I kid, I kid.
I’d like to use facebook and google to greater advantage in promoting my business. However, the facebook page that uses relevant keywords links to a malware site. And google makes me bid against a herbal products pyramid scheme. I could spend my time worrying about how to compete with scam artists, or I could spend my time more productively.
When the facebook exodus (inevitably and eventually) happens, I think it’s going to be so abrupt that even the haters will be shocked.
I don’t know a single person who likes facebook. Many, including myself, who find it useful enough that the benefits outweigh the drawbacks, but not a single one who has warm feelings towards facebook as an entity. At some point everyone will blink and the user base will be gone. Not a single backwards glance.
My Facebook strategy.
- Stop using the account I set up a decade ago with hundreds of “friends.”
- Start a new account, with my last name now in my mother’s maiden name.
- Only befriend, real friends. This is just like the house clutter concept: If I haven’t seen you, spoken with you, or had a personal written exchange with you in the last 12 months, you are most definitely not a friend.
- Stick to #3 even when people you like, but who aren’t really friends, send you friend requests. You’re already friends with them on the useless account (see #1).
- Communicate and keep up with the very few people in #3.
My Facebook strategy is the same, except without Facebook.
It is certainly possible that Facebook has peaked. Lots of other social media sites that seemed like unstoppable juggernauts have fallen, from AOL to myspace.
The SPAM problem on FB will always exist so long as FB is ad supported. Advertising is about getting people who aren’t paying attention to you to pay attention to you. Targeted advertising doesn’t eliminate that problem, it just aims better.
One of the problems for me is that FB doesn’t let me decide what is in my feed, nor what is sent out as endorsements in my name. The “like” button and its Orwellian implied endorsement is insidious. I remember an official FB page informing people about an upcoming privacy change. To comment on the change you first had to “like” it. Even for pages I do want to hear from FB falls down. FB wants to monetize the feed, so FB sends fewer and fewer of the posts (“status updates” - stupid term) from companies and pages I do want because it wants those pages to pay for access. I’m not even given an option to have a say in it past “liking” a page. :-p
But, I suspect peak FB may be wishful thinking on Cory’s part. Right now, FB is just too useful a way for me to keep up with friends. That could change when the Next Thing comes around, but that hasn’t happened yet.
Always felt there should be a sandbox or a clean version of a Facebook or Google+ member page. Yea, you can push people into ‘friend’ or ‘restricted’ circles but those who are restricted are bound to catch on when they notice your baby photos haven’t changed in years but you’ve been traveling the world. Etc.
The default should be restricted to whatever you post but there would be a tick box if you want it to appear in your fake, clean world.
FB will still try to link you back to all those other friends from your first account. It’s good at that. Remarkably good.
The problem with “friends” you don’t want to include but that you’ve got to include for various and sundry reasons is one reason I prefer Google+'s approach of circles. I can have a circle for regular co-workers/bosses or for family and not have everything I post visible to them. That fits the way we normally socialize a lot better than FB’s “friends”/“not-friends” dichotomy. That still, though, does leave the normal problem of the co-worker who’s also a drinking buddy saying something he shouldn’t, but that’s not unique to FB/G+ and we had to deal with it before they came along.
Iwouldn’tsay “godsent” was a perfectlyniceword. Alright?
? It’s in lots of dictionaries and it’s frequently used. That makes it a perfectly nice word.
Yes, Google+ is an excellent way to avoid having to include people you don’t want to in your close friends list, sort of the same way living in a vast wasteland is an “excellent” way to avoid having to be surrounded by people.
Who uses Google+ by choice? Google+ peaked before it was created :-p
There are a /lot/ of artists (especially photographers, but also writers, painters, etc) and tech people on G+. It did eventually get around to rolling out most of the blindingly-obvious features (like event management) that were so painfully obvious due to their absence when it came out.
But then, features aren’t everything, as twitter proves.
I totally agree that FB gets worse the more you use it and the more it evolves as well.
People hate it. It makes them miserable. But I think it would be a mistake to think that that means it’s going down. The social pressures that get you into FB and keep you on it (and keep you from unfriending those people you desperately don’t want to see) can be quite strong. Obviously, some people stay off it, or get off and stay off, but if you’re married with kids and relatives, and Mom demands you use FaceBook to communicate, a lot of people are going to find it hard to stay off.
It’s a bit like a crab bucket, really. You try to escape and the other angry crabs drag you back down. Or even reach entirely out of the bucket and pull you in.
If anything puts a dent in them it may be the unmarried with no kids people who rightly think it’s a dull, boring, sanitized padded room and have no interest in it. But once they get dull and boring too, FB will be there waiting.