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Facebook Deactivation, Reactivation
I recently deactivated my Facebook account after being a member of the popular social media site for several years. When I first opened my account I used it very little and then later only to share photos and ordinary updates, nothing too deep. But I must confess I broke my own Facebook etiquette rules and was eventually drawn in to some pretty heavy political, social and moral debates. Suffice it to say it caused some serious arguments, hurt feelings and broken relationships. I was so upset over the turn of events I took the step of deactivating (which is not the same as deleting) my account for over a month.
Life without Facebook
At first I found myself missing Facebook. I would see things on the news and would think that would be interesting to share, but then realize, oh wait, I don’t have a Facebook account anymore. After awhile I began to forget about it and realized I could now fill my time with more important things like eating and cleaning the house. Okay, so I wasn’t spending that much time, but it was probably more than it should have been.
One redeeming feature of Facebook
But a thought was gnawing at me. Each time I published a new article I immediately tweeted about it. But my finger hovered over the Facebook share button. Reactivating my account was simple. All I’d need to do was simply sign back in. I have a fair amount of friends and therefore could be sharing my articles and writings with them and getting the word out that I’m available to write content for any one of them. Still, I worried about reactivating the account.
Just like being back at school
I was feeling a bit like a kid who had come down with mono and missed a fair amount of school. What would my friends think or say when I reappeared? Friends couldn’t delete me while I was deactivated, but how many would do it now? Would they ignore me leading me to think they hadn’t even noticed my absence? Okay, I admit I was over thinking things. So when I decided to reactivate my account mainly in order to share my writing and writing business I waited and was immediately greeted with happy posts and comments. Whew!
What happened to real friends?
When we stop and think about how we conduct ourselves on Facebook as opposed to the way we conduct ourselves in real life it all seems pretty silly. Amassing thousands of friends on Facebook has become a measure of self-worth and popularity. Getting drawn in to petty arguments and divulging personal information are common occurrences on Facebook, but things most of us would never do during face to face conversations. The anonymity of the internet has given many of us a false sense that what we post has no effect on our “friends”. Interacting on Facebook has become the preferred method of keeping in touch with our friends and family. Leaving birthday wishes on someone’s wall or inviting family members to get-togethers via Facebook messages has replaced greeting cards and phone calls.
Using Facebook for good and not evil
Now that I’m back on Facebook I’m determined to use it for good instead of evil. Like Twitter, Facebook can be a powerful tool for freelancers and other businesses. I promise not to get sucked in to dumb arguments and debates. I will not post anything political or religious related. I vow to be totally unaffected if I ever get defriended. It’ll be interesting to see how things unfold over the next weeks and months.