Social media does not need to be complicated… or creepy. Especially not creepy. Facebook’s latest change includes this mini newsfeed in the upper right hand corner that updates like Twitter and no matter how far down you scroll on your regular newsfeed, it hovers with you. It allows you to keep track of practically every friend and every thing they do. For instance, a former coworker of mine is getting coffee with her friend this Saturday at a certain time and place – both of which I now know. Whether I wanted to be a creepy stalker or not, Facebook’s newest change forces me to be one.
Google+, however, isn’t as active. I’ve only been on it for about an hour, but already I’ve noticed the lack of frantic status updates or wall posts or comment-likes or photo comments or location updates or video posts or photo posts or link posts or new friends or friend suggestions or people you might know, but everyone knows you don’t know…
Facebook was once simple and peaceful. You could write on others’ walls in relative privacy, like not having what you said to your friend pop up on every one of your friends’ newsfeeds. Sure, you could adjust the settings so that it wouldn’t do that, but when you’re in college or you just got a new job, you probably got a bunch of new friends who haven’t made the adjustments to their profiles. So now you’re seeing all their wall-to-wall conversations as they’re happening. And this has been how Facebook works for the past couple of years.
It’s far too creepy and far too complicated to be enjoyed like it was years ago. Instead of spending hours on it talking to other people, now the hours are spent trying to figure out how to get rid of that hovering window that follows you around like an annoying pop-up ad. Wonder if Facebook is aware of that similarity?
I’ve often been wondering if Facebook is worth the work? I know that plenty of people have abandoned Facebook “for good,” which really means they’ll be back in a couple months. But I have a friend who left Facebook a couple years ago and has been doing just fine without it. He gets a lot done, still keeps up with current events, and doesn’t have to put up with the frequent emotional posts from distant friends and family that usually end up bashing one another. He has internet peace and honestly, I want that, too.
Am I leaving Facebook for good? Probably not – at least not for a while. I still have too many friends with whom I’m only able to communicate through Facebook. But I’m enjoying Twitter and Google+ seems to offer every bit of the simplicity I want from Facebook. It might take a while for Google+ to make its way into the mainstream of social networking, especially amongst the friends and family who aren’t really tech-savvy. But in the mean time, I’m not going to use Facebook as often. I’m going to encourage Twitter and Google+ not just because they’re hip and cool, but also because they’re simple and not creepy.
As always, though, I’m going to keep posting my blogs on whatever social site I’m a part of. If there’s something I have yet to be frustrated over, it’s WordPress. I love messing around with the widgets, themes, and overall aesthetic style of the things I write. And since my blog’s activity is dependent upon the posts I write, it’s much less hyper-active.
Facebook has simply become far too frustrating to remain faithful to. I might change my mind once I get used to the new template, but I know for a fact that’s going to be the same day Facebook makes another change and the frustration will ensue all over again. Its ever-revolving identity crisis is simply too exhausting to keep up with.