When Facebook first came onto the scene, I still had a MySpace account. I had no idea what Facebook was, only that I needed to set up an account if I wanted to “follow” a guy I had just met and keep up with his writing. He was a musician and fellow writer, and didn’t care for MySpace for whatever reason. So I created a Facebook account and added him as a friend.
For a few years, I didn’t do much with the account, other than add a friend here and there as people started migrating over from MySpace. In the beginning, for me at least, it was just something I thought about when I got an email saying I had a new friend request. I didn’t much care for the layout, I was used to being able to customize my page on MySpace, and for someone who loves designing things, but sucks at it in real life, I enjoyed that part of MySpace.
Once Facebook took off as a social media platform, I jumped on the bandwagon with all the other sheep. It was fine, in the beginning, it truly was a social platform, at least for me. I caught up with people I hadn’t talked to in years, kept in touch, shared photos of my kids and life, just like everyone else.
But as time has passed, so has my care for Facebook. Honestly, I rarely ever log on these days. I have removed it from my phone, except for the messenger application. I still converse with friends afar via that app so I doubt I’ll remove that any time soon. I have one sister who only “texts” via Messenger for some reason as well.
But it isn’t social for me any longer. It’s about politics, advertising, and putting out your entire life for the world to see. Sure, I’m a writer who writes mostly about personal experiences, however, I don’t put my life on Facebook.
That seems at odds, doesn’t it? Not really.
When writing here or anywhere else, I choose what I share and to an extent, who I share it with. Most people on Medium are here to read the experiences of others, I’m not shoving it in anyone’s face. I’ve made friends here as well, and oddly, find Medium more of a social platform than the ones created to be just that.
It’s still strange, to me, to see people I’ve known most of my life, who in real life are intelligent and experienced with life, blasting their intimate details to the public, without thought of repercussions. I honestly can’t imagine why they think anyone with access to their page, and the posts I’m talking about are usually set to “public”, needs to know that their significant other cheated on them. Or that they were diagnosed with an STD. Yes, I’ve seen such posts. And it is insane to me.
Some things are just meant to be kept between the people they are happening to, not for the entire world to consume. It’s like attending a gossip fest that you didn’t invite yourself to be a part of, and quite honestly, it changes the way I see some people I thought I knew.
People have the right to say whatever they choose in this country, and in most cases, that’s a good thing. Just don’t wonder why your “social” circle may be shrinking, when all you have to say is something negative.
At that point, it stops being social and just starts being a train wreck. The looky-loos will stay, but those who aren’t in it just to see you fall, will likely exit, stage left.