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When Facebook Becomes a Nuisance!

Updated on May 18, 2013

Like many people I joined up on Facebook a couple of years ago. At first I found Facebook kind of fun, after all it was an easy way to track down long lost friends (unless they were female and might have married since I knew them last so changing their surname). I found it amusing to be able to "throw a sheep" at someone metaphorically speaking, and the whole set up could be quite entertaining.

Sadly I have over months found myself with rather a quandary. I don't want to leave Facebook because I might find a lost friend re-discovers me through Facebook, (or me them). I also have genuine friends on Facebook who tend to use Facebook in preference to their email, therefore I risk losing touch with them if I cancel my Facebook account.

On the negative side I am totally fed up of finding my email inbox crammed with invitations to Facebook events I have no interest in, friend's requests from people I do not believe I know, but am too worried I might have forgotten who they are to risk not accepting their friendship request at the risk of offending them, (especially if I do know them), friendship suggestions from existing friends of mine, not to mention invitations to join groups or many applications such as "Hatching Eggs", "Farmville" etc. I do know that I can block invitations to individual applications, but as fast as I block them I receive more from new applications.

When I log in to the website I find numerous friend suggestions, and I can easily find I waste an hour going through them approving them, (even though I don't know if I know these people or not). In fact, right now, the best thing I can say about Facebook is that it helps me to promote my hubs as I can announce on Facebook every time I publish a new hub.

I am somewhat bemused as to why Facebook is therefore so popular. After all, is it just me that finds the sheer volume of rubbish they receive from Facebook tantamount to receiving huge amounts of SPAM mail? Wasn't it just so much easier to use old fashioned emails to interact with our friends, and what was wrong with using "Friends Reunited" to find long lost mates?

Right now I am rarely logging in to my Facebook account because I know I will instantly lose at least an hour of my life. I log in now about once every two months in order to preserve my precious time for gardening, hubbing and having a life! Any emails I receive from Facebook are instantly deleted on the basis I shall deal with the invitations etc the next time I log on to the actual Facebook site itself. The only exceptions I make to this rule are if I receive a direct message on Facebook from someone I know. If I recognise the person and read the message that is shown in the email, I will log in so that I can reply.

Surely other users of Facebook get equally frustrated by this too, and isn't it about time Facebook addressed the problem and included user settings that allow us the option to block application requests and event invitations completely. Additionally I feel Facebook should find a way to ensure that friendship requests include the requirement for the person making the request to state how they think they know the person they are requesting friendship approval from. This might at least give a clue to the recipient as to if they genuinely know this person or not before they accept or deny any friendship requests. My last suggestion would be that Facebook ask women registering with the site to list any former surnames (if they wish to), which would make it far easier to track down women friends that had either married, been widowed, or divorced and re-married since the person searching for them last knew them. After all, if I am looking for a Nikki Smith who was married to an Adam Smith, but since then she has been widowed and re-married to a person with the surname "Yates", any search I do for a Nikki Smith will not offer results, but a search for a Nikki Smith who had "Smith" listed as a former surname would turn up her name.

I reckon Facebook need to make a whole load of improvements before they can totally relax in what they might feel is a true success story.



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    • VioletSun profile image

      VioletSun 6 years ago from Oregon/ Name: Marie

      Cindy: I joined facebook, left and came back last year, and I have warmed up to FB. Connected with a niece I have not met who leaves overseas, and friends I haven't seen in decades.

      When getting friend's requests I always check to make sure if its a friend of a friend and then approve it. If its a total stranger, I won't approve it as I have a man who followed me for decades find me in FB, so I blocked him; my s/o's ex, ex who after 17 years still calls or emails him, wanting him back, also found him in FB. Its a great world online, but alas, also can be intrusive. My settings are such that only my FB friends can find me in a search.

    • mistyhorizon2003 profile image
      Author

      Cindy Lawson 6 years ago from Guernsey (Channel Islands)

      I am glad you have found a compromise Violetsun, but I don't want to miss out on people who I may not have been in touch with for years finding me so I don't have the option to use the settings you do. Also I can never be sure if a friend's request is a person I know as they may be a hubpage user who is using their real name rather than their Hubber name, possibly with a real photo rather than their usual Hubber avatar, or they could be a person who has remarried etc and their surname has changed. It really is a bit of a nightmare.

    • G-Ma Johnson profile image

      Merle Ann Johnson 6 years ago from NW in the land of the Free

      But whenever you do receive a friend request there is a spot where you can send them a message...I do that and ask how we know one another??? That way I then decide what to do, as I agree with HP names being different. There are many ways to find someone...Also if you ignore requests the person doesn't see that...I Love FB...:O) Hugs G-Ma

    • profile image

      diogenes 6 years ago

      Hi Miss. I come and go on Facecrook depending on my degree of aloneness and/or boredom. It's like a drug of some sort. I also find it demeaning, but am hard put to say why. May I suggest you and I are too bright to clutter up our lives with this purile nonsense? Sounds good anyway! Bob PS I have put a few hubs on there, too, but I find few read them, most viewers are kids and have the attention span of molluscs and communicate in Etruscan.

    • mistyhorizon2003 profile image
      Author

      Cindy Lawson 6 years ago from Guernsey (Channel Islands)

      Hi G-Ma, lovely to see you here. I know it is possible to send them a message to ask how you know them, but it becomes ever so time consuming if you only go on there like I do about once every couple of months or more, by which time I have like 200 friend requests waiting for me. I usually just accept them all, but now I get messages with Bible quotes coming through to me automatically on Facebook emails from people I must have accepted as friends LOL. Perhaps I should close my FB account and just start all over again with a blank slate so to speak.

    • mistyhorizon2003 profile image
      Author

      Cindy Lawson 6 years ago from Guernsey (Channel Islands)

      Hi Bob, lovely to see you here too. As usual I can always guarantee you will leave me laughing or smiling. What a great comment, especially the part where you say "most viewers are kids and have the attention span of molluscs and communicate in Etruscan.", had me in stitches.

    • Green Lotus profile image

      Hillary 6 years ago from Atlanta, GA

      Hi misty - I too have a love/hate relationship with facebook, although I am not always plagued with the same requests. Too many of my friends are addicted to 'farmville' and that trashes up my screen to the point where I have to wade through requests for newborn calves and fertilizer! I just keep scrolling. I do delete all request from those whom I choose not to befriend. Many of them are complete strangers anyway. Why do I stick around? Hey, it's a great way to attract readers to my Hubs!

    • akirchner profile image

      Audrey Kirchner 6 years ago from Central Oregon

      I agree there are some downsides and like you, I don't want to quit being on there! I am now getting (every once in a while) ads for meds sent through facebook - I really needed more! And the constant farmville and other gaming requests, etc. are nothing but a total annoyance for those of us who actually have work to do!

      I wonder if they will listen and take some of this garbage off there. It is a great tag for hubpages and again, I'd hate to lose it but you can only take so much extra 'garbage' being thrown at you all the time - it is sensory overload!

    • Suiiki profile image

      Suiiki 6 years ago from City of the Newly Wed and Nearly Dead

      I have turned off emails from Facebook, I think I have it set so that only important ones can get through (Such as when they update the site or their policies)

      As for when people add me, a simple "Hi there, I have a horrible memory, would you be offended if I asked if I know you?" often works.

      At the moment my facebook friends lsit needs a good pruning, it has as many dead-heads as the hanging basket I put in the dead tree our landlady won't let us cut down.

    • mistyhorizon2003 profile image
      Author

      Cindy Lawson 6 years ago from Guernsey (Channel Islands)

      Hi Green Lotus, yes, Farmville is particular irritant, especially as I do not partake of it. I am beginning to think the only reason I stay involved in facebook is for the plugs for my hubs, and it does generate some traffic as I have checked my Stats on this.

      Hi akirchner, I really hope they do take notice as they need to. I can only assume many people are probably already so fed up of Facebook that they are leaving in droves, and this will continue until something is done about these issues.

      Hi Suiiki, nice to know you feel the same way as I do, (and many others no doubt).

    • lorlie6 profile image

      Laurel Rogers 6 years ago from Bishop, Ca

      Hi mistyhorizon-I began my computer 'career' with Facebook, then moved on to bigger and better things-HubPages, for one. I only occasionally return to FB to check on messages, etc.

      As far as I know, you can not delete your account there-let me know if you can, okay?

    • mistyhorizon2003 profile image
      Author

      Cindy Lawson 6 years ago from Guernsey (Channel Islands)

      Hi Lorlie, I have been told by others you can, but have not looked into it myself. As I understand it a couple of my friends did delete their accounts but started again with new ones, (although I would have to double check I understood them correctly and ask them how they did it). If I find out how I shall let you know.

    • lorlie6 profile image

      Laurel Rogers 6 years ago from Bishop, Ca

      Thanks!

    • mistyhorizon2003 profile image
      Author

      Cindy Lawson 6 years ago from Guernsey (Channel Islands)

      No probs Lorlie, am working on it.

    • Christoph Reilly profile image

      Christoph Reilly 6 years ago from St. Louis

      When a bunch of us Hubbers joined at the same time back in the day, it was crazy. My life seemed consumed by it. I have the big fancy farm still - tough it's seriously neglected these days. I finally closed down that account and opened another one with an email address that's separate from my regular email, and I never go to check it. So I am virtually Facebook spam free!

    • mistyhorizon2003 profile image
      Author

      Cindy Lawson 6 years ago from Guernsey (Channel Islands)

      Good idea, I think I will go down the whole route you have done Christoph. Is it easy to close it down by the way, as I am trying to find out how to for Lorlie (above), as well as myself?

    • Bard of Ely profile image

      Steve Andrews 6 years ago from Lisbon, Portugal

      I hate having to waste time deleting all the events I can't possibly go to and other rubbish and I decided to block all applications last year so rarely get any now. Over the last year since I became a public supporter of David de Rothschild it has in many ways toughened me up in my attitude because I have had to deal with so many nasty people with hateful comments that the only answer was to block and report them. My freedom of speech approach was ended by the behaviour of these people who are mainly David Icke fans!

      The good side of the place is a very rapid turnover of feedback to news posted including hubs and I have made some really great friends via the place. I have even found some employment via Facebook and am now writing for Feed Your Brain magazine because of it. I was also invited to go and live and work in Dubai by a Facebook friend although I turned this amazing offer down. In comparison with Myspace I'd say that Facebook is heaven!

    • mistyhorizon2003 profile image
      Author

      Cindy Lawson 6 years ago from Guernsey (Channel Islands)

      Cheers Steve, truly informative feedback. Can you really block ALL events at once, or do you have to do them one at a time? Also, is there any way to block ALL applications on this basis??

    • Bard of Ely profile image

      Steve Andrews 6 years ago from Lisbon, Portugal

      Cindy, I have to delete events as they come in though I think you can block them in settings. I will have another look because I am sick of all this stuff. Applications I do as they arrive and made a big stand just before Xmas. There was an overwhelming deluge of junk coming at me with sparkly fairies and Xmas gifts for my tree and that sort of crap so I was blocking all the gifts too and after a week or so of blocking anything which arrived that was an application I started seeing a reduction and now I only got very few new ones.

      BTW I also find that FB has a great number of real celebrity pages who use it and it is possible to communicate with. Yes, there are a lot of fake sites on there like Myspace but the real ones make it an important site for me.

    • mistyhorizon2003 profile image
      Author

      Cindy Lawson 6 years ago from Guernsey (Channel Islands)

      Thanks for this info Steve, very useful all round. I just love the idea of you receiving loads of "sparkly fairies" and things. You just don't strike me as the "sparkly fairy" type somehow LOL

    • izettl profile image

      Laura Irwin 6 years ago from The Great Northwest

      I find myself thinking the same thing about FB. Actually rigth from the beginning, my closest friends became less close because we just got on FB, not we hardly do that anymore. I think it's more nuissance. Nice to know I'm not the only one.

    • mistyhorizon2003 profile image
      Author

      Cindy Lawson 6 years ago from Guernsey (Channel Islands)

      Thanks izettl, I am now up to about 8 weeks without having logged in to Facebook at all, and I have to say I truly don't miss it, but the emails from Facebook just keep on coming anyway. I really need to close that account and start again, but this time only invite friends I am certain I want, and certain I know. It is simply a nightmare otherwise.

    • Lady Guinevere profile image

      Debra Allen 6 years ago from West By God

      Go to your account options and under applications check the ones that you don't want. In your account setting it should have a place whre you can turn off e-mails too. I hope this helps.

    • mistyhorizon2003 profile image
      Author

      Cindy Lawson 6 years ago from Guernsey (Channel Islands)

      Thanks LG, I might just give that a go as you are the first one to suggest that this is possible in account options. I knew you could block individual ones, but ideally I just want to block ALL applications, event invitations etc full stop. If this is not efficient though (as new applications seem to appear all the time), I shall just close that account I reckon.

    • Lady Guinevere profile image

      Debra Allen 6 years ago from West By God

      Well if you do have to do that and you make another account--let me know and I will friend you or follow you or whatever it is now!

    • mistyhorizon2003 profile image
      Author

      Cindy Lawson 6 years ago from Guernsey (Channel Islands)

      Hi LG, of course I shall let you know as soon as I do it, just haven't got time right now as the veggie allotment, and the upcoming local show I am entering loads of veg into, is taking up most of my time. Shutting down my Facebook account will be time consuming as I need to make a note of all the people I am currently "friends" with that I want to stay friends with, and then track them down again once I have a new account opened.

    • Lady Guinevere profile image

      Debra Allen 6 years ago from West By God

      I am so happyt that you got some crops to show. We have had a very hot and dry summer. Next year I am getting a small pool with the metal sides and a plastic liner and filling it with a garden. I was told that the tree roots take all the nutrients out of the soil and that is why I don't get much produce. Actually they told me to dig a trench--yeah right --not in the roots and rocks we have here - so the pool will work just fine.

      I know what you mean about time consuming and saving all your friends. I add more everyday.

    • jayb23 profile image

      jayb23 6 years ago from India

      FB can take a lot of time, i have to admit that. But as long as you know that you are not wasting time, it should be perfectly alright. Keep up the good work misty.

    • mistyhorizon2003 profile image
      Author

      Cindy Lawson 6 years ago from Guernsey (Channel Islands)

      Thanks jayb23, to be honest I only keep on with Facebook in order to 'share' my newly published Hubs now. I reckon I spend about 30 minutes a month on it thesedays..... I would rather be here on Hubpages :)

    • profile image

      saroj kumar patial 5 years ago

      i feel FB is the worst addiction. I told my son and daughter in law to do away with FB or if not,use it sparingly.But they are at it almost the whole day and part of the night as well.I advised them time and again to instead read their books and improve their knowledge and advance their careers but on this they re set their settins so that i can not keep check whether they are still on FB or not. This i view as utter disregard for our advice and we have created a divide in the family just because of FB- such is the addiction. Families are splitting up..

    • mistyhorizon2003 profile image
      Author

      Cindy Lawson 5 years ago from Guernsey (Channel Islands)

      I tend to only use Facebook a minimal amount myself, and can never understand the whole addiction thing, but you are right. Many do appear to be totally addicted to it, a large amount of them being youngsters.

    • profile image

      almorr 3 years ago

      Hi Cindy, when my son gave me his XP Computer which no longer works he set up a Facebook Page for me, just for fun. I did not use it much until I got the Smartphone I am now using. I take a lot of photographs where I go walks, cycle runs etc, and post them on to my Facebook page, there also are many photos of my cat Eeshan as well. I have got many replies from all over the world, especially from the Far east. Both my son and daughter told me NOT to take any photos of myself (selfish) which I have not

      Alan

    • mistyhorizon2003 profile image
      Author

      Cindy Lawson 3 years ago from Guernsey (Channel Islands)

      Lol, I would love to see a pic of you Alan, that would be great x

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