My decision to deactivate my Facebook account had little to do with the company’s egregious breach of privacy and misuse of personal data by Cambridge Analytica. And, it had nothing to do with Facebook’s tepid response.
I assumed that my personal data was being watched by some evil or nefarious entity, but always sort of assumed it was one of our intelligence agencies that found my progressive views just a bit too progressive for their comfort.
Having spent a career managing crises for corporate America, I had a sense that Facebook would bungle this matter. It’s just in the company’s DNA not to do the right thing. Not unlike all the other companies that are simply clueless when they believe ugly events manage themselves.
My Decision Was a Personal Thing
Because I’m politically attuned and consume news like water, I found myself overwhelmed by all the idiotic things that initially the far-right and the Tea Party were doing, and later the plethora of nonsensical and inhumane actions by our so-called president and his administration. I became increasingly appalled at the lack of any check-and-balance by the GOP-controlled Congress and dismayed that this idiot in the White House might actually get to shape the Supreme Court for generations to come.
As a result, my posts became more and more acerbic and uncivil. While I just should have focused on pretty vacation photos and cat videos, I found it increasingly difficult to keep my anger and hostility to myself. Facebook was simply too damned convenient an outlet to share every foible by Trump and his minions and to vent all the ugly observations that popped into my head.
That’s just not healthy. And, it’s not who I want to be or be seen. So, my decision to unplug was entirely personal. If I lacked the self-discipline to control my urges, I needed to hit the eject button.
Missing Friends and Family Posts
Of course, I’ll miss the posts by friends and family that kept me in touch with their lives. I’ll miss the worthwhile causes, like the Parkland Kids and Sandy Hook Moms, and the opportunity to show support for their efforts to change the world.
I’ll miss the funny cartoons and inspirational posts that remind us of what is good and decent in this world.
But, choices have consequences — and I’ll live with mine.
Enjoy your time on Facebook if you play in that space. But as soon as it no longer feels like a healthy experience, run for the exit.