Fine, you win

And only because not having one of these is getting to be the equivalent of not having a telephone; holding out would only be to make a fetish of my contrarian-ness.

For the record, I still think it’s a godawful thing to do to any genuine friendship. But there you go.

9 responses to “Fine, you win”

  1. Tom Carden says :

    Interesting you feel that pressure. I’ve not used mine in over a year and I’m not missing it. Presumably there are all kinds of unanswered messages there and I just look rude, but I feel better pretending there isn’t a Facebook at all.

    I should probably have deactivated my account by now, but last time I checked they had an obnoxious attitude to leaving – other people could continue to use your identity on Facebook to add information about you, tag images etc. even after you left. So I didn’t bother.

    Oh, if you change your mind, be ready for this kind of thing:
    http://mike.teczno.com/notes/facebook-deactivation.html

    Or this:
    http://hitherto.net/2007/10/18/facebook-the-hotel-california-of-social-networks/

  2. Adrian Short says :

    I think it’s important for people to hold out so that “join the Facebook group” isn’t a viable way of organising something among certain groups.

    Having an account but keeping it secret among the people you know is a good way to get access to things that should be on the public web but aren’t. There’s no need to friend or be befriended or do anything other than observe.

    The deactivation screen is now a sickening emotional appeal, featuring five large photos of your friends with “Jack will miss you”, “Jill will miss you” etc.

    Do you really want to be part of that?

  3. AG says :

    No, obviously I don’t. You’re preaching to the choir, believe me.

  4. AG says :

    Oh, I’ve read Mike’s piece, and I’m perfectly aware of their shitty attitude.

    Mind you: I have absolutely no intention of actually using the thing. I do, though, hear from a lot of people who’ve apparently lost the ability to Google me, and say they’ve “had a hard time” getting in touch because I’m not there. This is mostly a sop to them, then.

    It’s also the case that I’m writing a book that is, at least in part, about how network technology changes the meaning of place, and I was beginning to feel irresponsible in ignoring the impact of the single best-populated and highest-profile virtual community.

  5. Adrian Short says :

    Indeed. I’m aware of your previous stance.

    Lurkers don’t really do any harm.

    Having said that, it’s hard to really know how it all works unless you delve into fairly heavy use. Unfortunately, that ends up being a similar stance to, “You can’t really appreciate the harm crack does until you’re addicted”.

  6. slavin says :

    but so, for argument’s sake, how would you articulate the enthusiasm towards twitter + dopplr, et al., vs the antipathy towards facebook, into which they all feed?

  7. AG says :

    Flickr was started by friends. Dopplr was started by friends. Twitter was started by people I’m fundamentally indifferent to, but have no reason to mistrust or dislike. Flickr and Dopplr particularly gave a good deal of thought to privacy and the preservation of amour-propre, and they were all colonized, early on, by people I like, respect, get a kick out of & believe to be possessed of good taste.

    None of the above can be said for Facebook.

    Are you gonna pop over here or what?

  8. Derek says :

    I’m OK with fetishizing my contrarian-ness, really. And having had dinner last night with a close friend who just got his first cell phone, I actually feel like I’m living in the future because I just got a twitter account.

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