Social media and me

Some thoughts by Ben Brooks on his dealings with social media in 2018 that resonate with my own thinking:

Social networks are not good, and have not been designed to be good for you. Sure, you could cherry pick arguments all day long, but there’s simply not been a compelling case made for these networks being good.

It shouldn’t be that way. Why should I participate in this? […]

I have no concrete plan for how to approach the shit-show of social media in 2018 and beyond, but I know it starts with not giving a fuck about it.

I haven’t opened Facebook in 2018, yet. I don’t miss it. I have deleted the app from my iPhone months ago and I haven’t registered my real email address with it. Am I missing out? What if someone sent me a message on Facebook? I wouldn’t know. Would it matter?

I don’t get why “checking Facebook” is still such a big thing.

Whenever I posted something to Facebook in the past, it felt like stepping on stage in a strip club, eye-balled by a crowd of voyeurs.

I don’t want to feed people I once added to my “friends” list with intimacies about what’s going on in my life right now. I don’t feel compelled by the opinions of these people on banalities that don’t matter to me, either. I don’t care about the “news feed” any more.

I signed off from Twitter, too. Honestly, who even uses it in Germany, anyway? Twitter always felt to me like a bazar of vendors trying to sell me on their agenda. A cacophony of voices yelling through creaking megaphones. A place for commercial exchange, not meaningful personal interaction.

It’s a giant waste of time and attention. Once you follow more than 50 people that tweet frequently, you won’t be able to catch up with your timeline unless you give up on other, potentially more important things in your life. Even more so if you subscribe to news outlets.

It’s also a carnival of liars. I never believed a word of Twitter big shots with plenty of followers that claim to read up on their timelines or reply to their mentions. These people don’t interact, they just dump their shit for others to consume. Their notion of community is a scam.

To me, Instagram is no exception. I tried to curate my feed for years to keep out the noise that bugged me elsewhere. Still, my effort is backfiring. These days, my Instagram feed shows nothing but insanely perfect photography from professional travel, nature and portrait photographers. Personas that one day post images of arctic auroras and drone shots from a tropical island paradise the next. These people must all be living a fairy tale life up in the heavens. Instead of inspiration, it gives me self-doubt about my boring provinciality as a work-around-the-clock hospital doctor.

Then there are Instagram stories of people that swept over from Facebook to annoy yet another audience with their gym selfies and food-shot boomerang videos.

I can’t find anything worthy of sharing anymore.

Where do I fit in then? What’s my social network in 2018?

Honestly, I don’t know. Is signing off the answer?