In the wake of the Facebook, privacy scares, there has been a new trending hashtag that has not gotten the exposure it deserves, #DeleteFacebook. Earlier this year, new data suggested that 44% of Facebook users between the ages of 18 and 29 deleted the Facebook app from their phone, additionally, they have either taken a break from the social network or deleted it entirely. Others have maxed out their privacy settings in an attempt to keep Zuckerberg and his gang of nosey nerds at bay. All of these changes are the aftermath of the Cambridge Analytical scandal that revealed that Facebook had compromised the data of millions of users.
Since the Cambridge Analytica scandal in March of 2018, Facebook’s share price has dropped significantly losing the company over 3 billion in market cap. Additionally, user acquisition has remained flat for the first time in the company’s history, facebook.com is now the third most visited website, down from number one. Most concerning for Facebook though, is that only 50% of teens are currently using the social network. This is concerning for the social network as it is continually working to establish value with investors and cement itself as a sure bet for decades to come. With so many social networking options on the market today, I am personally happy to see teens choosing other, healthier methods of connecting with their friends online.
Getting rid of Facebook can’t be so hard right? While is relatively easy to go online and download all your personal date and hit the delete button, doing so makes it difficult to stay in touch with and communicate with friends. This is partly due to the fact that we have forgotten how to communicate in ways other than Facebook, but also we all have a large network of friends online that Facebook helps us manage. Much like a company uses Salesforce to maintain relationships with its clients, individuals utilize Facebook in the same way. Let’s hypothetically say you deleted Facebook…ahhhh the relief. A few weeks later you miss your good friend’s birthday because it was not written down in your calendar as it would have been pre-Facebook. Its pain like this that every Facebook deleteor goes through, and keeps the masses on the platform. With so much of your social life tide to Facebook, how can one really leave? In so many ways, Facebook won’t let you quit as the costs of leaving are huge. It owns you and the relationships you have with your friends.
Besides birthdays and event invites, what are you really missing? Well, I wouldn’t know is that the guy who sat in front of my freshmen English class now lives in a Tiny House. I wouldn’t know that my college roommates ex-girlfriends now husband’s dog chewed through its bark box toy in 10 minutes. I wouldn’t know that my ex-girlfriend from high school’s kid is now potty-trained. Ahh, what I would miss….. What a shame.
What I do know is that with the extra 7ish hours on average I will have back per week, I can read the Wall Street Journal cover to cover to get caught up on the news. I can call a friend on the phone and find out about their life, hear their voice and really get a sense of how they are doing. I can wish someone a happy birthday in person. I will voice my political opinions in person, justify where I stand and look people in the eye while doing so.
It’s been decided, my relationship with Facebook is over. I will miss birthdays and events. I will probably be forgotten, and feel left out. I will miss good news, and bad but there is a solution. Call me, email me or shoot me a text. Let’s chat in person, it’s a far healthier way to communicate.