how to detox from facebook without losing its usefulness
I always complain that I do not have time for studying well, playing my electric bass, doing projects or hanging out with friends. While studying, it happens that I decline a coffee break because “time is running out, deadlines are coming”. Are these useful optimizations? Why should we micro-tune our daily schedules while being blind about macro-losses of time?
Have you ever quantified your time spent on Facebook? I’ve been on Facebook since more than two years, and use it everyday. Being a Computer Science student is a great excuse for also being more social as possible. I think that I pass about two hours on Facebook each day, being two hours a lower bound. How much do you? Two hours each day are ten hours lost during a 5-days week. This is impressive. How did I spend these hours before subscribing to Facebook? I don’t remember.
Unsubscribing from Facebook is an issue today. The great business and technological strategies of Facebook created a value that was missing before but we do not want to loose now: the possibility to do instant, massive communication with people that are dislocated from our position. This can be further concretized in terms of organizing ,long-term events, meeting up after lunch, chatting, sharing photos. I am reluctant to loose all of these. Unsubscribing from Facebook is terrorizing: we have fear to loose our social connections, being excluded from real-life, concrete events because “Well it was organized on Facebook messages/groups/events, you were not present so I could not invite you”. For the same reasons, new social networks such as Google + will easily fail, no matter how much they are better than Facebook or not.
I observed how do I generally spend my time on Facebook: it is not by answering a participation on an event or replying to important direct messages. I loose my time by virtually hanging around on my friends’ posts (links, photos, videos etc.) or by replying on my posts. So, how can I save all of this time wasted without loosing the great capability of organizing concrete things with people? I took the following decisions:
Blocking comments on my posts
Removing the possibility to post on my Wall
Hiding all the videos and photos I’m tagged in
Activating e-mail notifications for private messages and invites to events
Use some greasemonkey script for further cleaning out other non-useful functionalities
Use the great FB Purity browser extension
In this way, I don’t lose the great communication and organization facilities that Facebook provides, while throwing away most of its features that make me waste time. I did not completely block my wall because I still think that Facebook is useful for providing useful links to resources on the web, this turning it more like Twitter - that I love.
I do not use a commenting system anymore, but I would be glad to read your comments and feedback. Feel free to contact me.