There are a number of reasons Why I Am Leaving Facebook. When I first
became a Facebook member, a colleague welcomed me to “the biggest
time-waster on the planet.”
I am retired, I have the good fortune to arrange my time as I see fit and not bow to the dictates of a workplace.
How many minutes per day and hours per week or month do we “waste” on
Facebook? With that same time we could be writing a letter to a real
“friend”, not some “friend-of-a-friend” or some mere acquaintance on
Facebook. We could read a good book or watch an interesting film or
documentary. Perhaps we could even take a nap after lunch or before
dinner. I believe that anything useful, entertaining or educational is
preferable to Facebook.
I do not like the feeling that I “must” be on Facebook to see what is
going on with my friends. If you are my friend, you are already in
touch with me in some meaningful fashion. I first joined Facebook
because my former students made a page asking my not to leave my
position at Bilgi University. (John Hoca bizi ziyarete gelsiinn) They are wonderful, loving and caring and I will always thank them for their efforts on my behalf.
I started on the road to becoming a Facebook “addict,” I felt
compelled to check in and even to “like” this or that because someone
did the same for me. It is time to detox and quit what is, for me, a bad
Facebook offers me nothing that I cannot get in a phone call, a video
call, a postal letter, a paper greeting card, an email, a chat or a web
page with photos on it. It seems to me it is a lazy person’s way to
“keep in touch.” A quick like on Facebook is not the same as taking the
time to write a message to a significant friend telling them how much
you like or love them. Making contact takes effort and time. If you do
not want to make the effort to contact a friend, then is that person
really a friend worth contacting? If your “friend” cannot make the time
to contact you, then are they a friend? If you do not have the time,
perhaps you should seriously question the reason why and is whatever
else you are doing really worth the ridiculous amount of time you spend
If we use Facebook to “keep in touch” with friends we are lazy or not
very concerned friends. Because of Facebook we far too frequently avoid
calling a friend or writing a personal letter. In place of a really
meaningful and informative contact, Facebook users spend a few scarce
moments looking at photos of kids they may have never met, pets they may
never want to encounter, “friends of friends” they would not want to
meet in a dark alley and then out of habit or some form of misplaced
courtesy, “like” them.
Facebook pages display, among other things, a “collection of badly
spelled, semi-rant, semi-lunatic writings by your e-friends,”
unfortunately I must admit that I have been guilty of the rants and
probably other transgressions although I hope I was not found guilty of
the “badly spelled.”
I had hoped that some of my Facebook “rants,” comments or links that
would enable me to engage others in debate, discussion, disagreement, or
heated argument. Instead, I encountered a nearly complete ignoring of
the remarks, even though they were intended to provoke.
If I want to play an online game I do not need Facebook. If I want to
do anything online, and still remain, relatively anonymous, Facebook is
no place to be.
I plan to continue to connect on a personal level with my real
friends. If they do that for me, I will attempt to do the same for them,
if they do not, then I must assume they are not or never were my
There are genuine privacy issues associated with Facebook. We cannot
be assured that Facebook does not, has not or will not, gather
information about us, without our knowledge and our permission, for
commercial or other purposes.
Google is another online arena where there is a very high potential
for abuse of what used to be nobody’s business. Identity thefts happen
frequently, usually because someone did not safeguard their identity
enough, Facebook, Google and other online sites encourage us to open
ourselves to a larger group of people than we would ever consider
People have lost their jobs because they foolishly posted
inappropriate photos on Facebook or because their “friends” posted them.
When you announce on Facebook that you will be somewhere away from your
home for an evening, a day, or a weekend or leave on a holiday, you
could be telling someone that it is safe to break into your apartment
and take anything which pleases them. Facial recognition has gotten out
of hand by “tagging” photos of people, I do not want, nor should you
want, someone “tagging” or posting a photo without permission.
Ironically, there is another and opposite side which can be menacing
to those who have never started a Facebook account or deleted one. Some
potential employers question why a person does NOT have a Facebook
account. A bank manager, may sneak a peek and not find you and then be
hesitant to make you a loan, or a prospective client or other business
associate may “check up on you” and finds you do not have an account. It
may create a suspicion that you have something to hide, wherein the
“may” could turn into a “must” from that force of suspicion.
Negative assumptions are the antithesis of a free society wherein a
person is assumed innocent until proven guilty. Any assumptions to the
contrary should be resisted by any means necessary. I would rather lose a
job or not get an interview than feel forced to start a Facebook page
because a potential employer was suspicious about why I did not have
I thank all of you who have pulled me into Facebook with your good
intentions and I hope you will understand why I am now leaving.