28 November 2012 @ 05:58 pm
Dragged back to Facebook, kicking and screaming  
I left Facebook over two years ago because I didn't like their corporate practices, their privacy policies, or their user interface. I didn't like the games, the ads, or the constant invitations to events and pseudo-events I couldn't or wouldn't attend. And managing my friends list was a constant chore.

I've been off of Facebook ever since, but it's been getting harder and harder to avoid. A nonprofit I'm involved with used Facebook to coordinate a recent publicity event. You have to be on Facebook to enter some contests. People are always sending me links to pictures, polls, and articles that are locked behind Facebook's garden wall. The final straw was that I was unable to participate in the auction of Mark Bourne's toy robots to support Clarion West. Refusing to have a Facebook account these days is like refusing to have a credit card -- an understandable choice, but it makes life harder.

So, I'm back. You can find me at http://www.facebook.com/david.d.levine.sf. I still don't like their corporate practices and find their user interface atrocious, but they've made one important change: they've added "subscriptions," which means that I don't need to be "friends" with a couple thousand strangers in order for them to see what I post. I will only be friending people who are my actual real-world friends; everyone else is welcome to subscribe. This will, I think, greatly reduce the hassle factor that drove me away before.

This is actually Phase Two of my revamped global social media strategy, but the cart rolled past the horse. Look for Phase One in the coming week.
 
 
( 9 comments — Leave a comment )
Amylovelyangel on November 29th, 2012 04:49 am (UTC)
A valiant effort on your part... but the world does make it very difficult to remain an outsider.

I shall carry on the resistance as long as I can. (^_^)
Kate Schaefer: First Iconkate_schaefer on November 29th, 2012 04:52 am (UTC)
I'm still resisting, but with nearly my whole family over there, it's getting harder and harder.
Luke McGuffholyoutlaw on November 29th, 2012 06:18 am (UTC)
Gobble gobble hey, one of us, one of us. Gobble gobble hey, one of us.

PS-- try Social Fixer. It works with Firefox and any browser other than IE.

Edited at 2012-11-29 06:18 am (UTC)
Grant Krugerthirdworld on November 29th, 2012 06:46 am (UTC)
I friended you! I'm glad they made changes that made them more palatable because, love Facebook or hate it, for any level of fan/supporter/reader engagement you can't ignore it.
dd-bdd_b on November 29th, 2012 05:29 pm (UTC)
Huh, I follow Facebook every day, and I haven't noticed this "subscription" thing. This goes back to the plasticity and arcaneness of the user interface I think -- or maybe I'm just not paying attention.

Edited at 2012-11-29 05:29 pm (UTC)
David D. Levinedavidlevine on November 29th, 2012 05:36 pm (UTC)
The only reason I knew about the feature was that maryrobinette blogged about it.
Timapparentparadox on November 30th, 2012 04:26 pm (UTC)
Are you still treating it like a virus (running it in a separate browser, etc.)?

So far, I'm OK with just missing things. I figure that I was missing things before FB came into existence, and I'll miss some things even if I am on FB. But, I can understand your analogy with credit cards.

Good luck.
David D. Levinedavidlevine on November 30th, 2012 04:44 pm (UTC)
The whole separate browser thing is too much hassle. I'm just accepting Facebook's knowing everything I do on line as a cost of doing business -- same as the junk mail and financial risk that come with owning a credit card. I didn't mind missing Facebook chit-chat, but there are so many sites that require an FB login to register or participate that it was becoming a hassle *not* to have one.
paulshandy on December 9th, 2012 12:42 am (UTC)
Welcome to the world of people who are on Facebook because of family (me), people who hate Walmart but are too broke to shop elsewhere, and people who go crazy trying to conform to the world because somehow they think it's better than going crazy rebelling against it.
( 9 comments — Leave a comment )