Dear Facebook, you are gone until this Lenten season ends.
I’ve missed you, but it seems as though we cannot be together for a while.
The obligations of Catholicism often lead the giving up of something for a period of forty days prior to Easter. Past years favorites have included things like french fries, cake, ice cream, showering–no, just kidding about the last part. Why would someone give up showering for forty days? The bigger question is, though, why would someone give up Facebook for forty days? The informative, gossip-filled, and sometimes edifying social network that’s so huge it even has a movie based upon it’s creation, is something that many high schoolers, college students, young adults, and adults alike have found to be a, well, an addiction.
In the days of MySpace*I had no knowledge of a like button, of the crisp white and pale blue screens of another emerging social network, of a live news feed, or anything that could possibly be perceived as being related to Mark Zuckerburg’s multi-million dollar money making domain. Everything that could possibly have been foreseen as status-worthy in the latter two years of middle school were posted. Multi-colored backgrounds, block and simple layouts, layers of neon skulls and photos flashing the peace sign were what was in back in the day. But now although the times have changed, my then dependence on MySpace informants has shifted, packed up, and moved on to the new aforementioned website.
I’ve only had my Facebook for about a year. In this year MySpace has had the least amount of use in the three years of my ownership. At first I didn’t much like Facebook, posting statuses such as “I prefer MySpace” or “I don’t see what’s so great about Facebook,” and then, sometime during the summer, Facebook became everything.
Suddenly writing on walls, poking people, and stalking become socially acceptable. Because with a new world where technologies work to display other technologies, Facebook was a prime candidate for success. If you got a new camera, you could post all the pictures you take on it. If you got a new phone, you could create a group for people to give you their numbers. An agenda was a thing of the past when your school created the homework help pages stating what was due for each class that day. Honestly, even if you need help with homework, who needs to call a friend for help when you can just go find a free tutor online for free?
The human’s utter dependence on technology has grown to somewhat of an extreme in this century. Anything from social networks, to cell phones, to everything Apple. The human dependency on technology can be taken to such extremes that companies such as CuteCircuit have created dresses donned with LED lights and music players. One dress they have designed even doubles as a cell phone. Yes, a cell phone. Because most humans, although they love their phone, they don’t want to have to lug it around all day to update their status.
In the opinion of an ex-Facebookaholic, the social network has pushed the era of technology to a new level. New cameras are used for profile pictures, phones are used for status updates, and relationships are deemed official only if there’s an update. It’s a sad dependency, but it’s also a subjective one.
In having given up Facebook I’ve found that my dependency on my laptop has lessened. The once four hours of time wasted has now been moved to one; one hour for homework. My camera is only used for newspaper purposes and every once in a while when a friend of mine takes it. I don’t use my phone’s internet anymore at all. Without Facebook the human dependency on technologies seen throughout the world is virtually gone. And I’m proud to say life ignorance is blissful.
*Sometime around 2008, back when MySpace was “cool.”