Strange photo I know but this was breakfast with Jane at Betty’s Tea Rooms Harrogate ! A social setting full of people taking and passing the time of day.
I was reminded today by a friend how Social media used to be an extension of our friendships ! I for one used to go out partying and clubbing and use MySpace and DontStayIn as well as FacePic as well as MSM to keep in contact with my friends. This would be online chat after a night out or arranging the next night out or meet up.
It went on after I moved 300 miles as an escape from reality to chat with old friends and new after work and again to arrange meet ups and trips etc.
It was great from my friend who’s husband had left her to talk to friends as she was stuck at home with two very young children.
Yes Social Media was quite good very useful and very funny.
But things changed with Facebook and the crazy Algorithms… suddenly you could not swear you dare not look at a nipple let alone post one you could get banned for no reason and suddenly everyone had an opinion and mutuel respect went out of the window ! Friends had to be divided in to groups so they did not argue and fight and it went down hill from then on.
I guess the big changes came when Facebook worked out they could make all your data mean something if they could store it all and so they did. They built huge data centres and boasted about it.
Then they built computers to make sense of it and started marketing to us all and changing buisness for their advertising !
By this time they had a need to keep you on for as long as possible ! To be honest it was addictive enough without them making it more addictive. But now they had your data they could work out how to keep you engaged for longer.
You used to walk down the road see a car parked on yellow lines and take no notice or think nob ! But now you would go home with a photo post it on Facebook and talk about it all day ! You would now be stuck in a negative loop with your friends moaning about parking for 8 hours ! Facebook worked this out and encouraged negativity and violence etc to wind people up to argue and on it goes.
It works both ways violence hate comedy etc etc but it’s taking away the positive aspects and just feeding you anything it wants to keep you engaged.
Now I have been off Facebook for a few months I have just about detoxed from it. Unfortunately I was still on Instagram but that’s gone now and only today did I realise it was doing the same !!
I would walk my dog take a photo then put it on Instagram and constantly check for comments and likes without even realise I was doing it.
Why did I check ! I don’t even care about comments and likes but the App would tell me there was a comment or like to keep me engaged ! Instagram is now doing what Facebook did but it’s changing and evolving at such a rapid rate it’s messing with peoples mental health !
Moving back to Flickr I can see just how bad Instagram and Facebook were ! Flickr is more how MySpace was for musicians ! Like minded people sharing their art. You can also turn off notifications if you want !
I was out walking today when a car nearly hit me ! 6 months ago I would have posted something about it on Facebook and been stuck in the moment all day discussing it with my friends !!! Imagine what that does to our primitive brains. Today I just shouted Wanker ( the old fashioned way) and forgot about it ( well until I started writing this)
We all still need certain aspects of Social media in this modern world but I think it’s time we decided what we want it for and not allowing it to take over and control our internet time.
I used Social media first to communicate with friends then for my buisness but now I am retired it’s time to walk away. It’s really not the place to be for most people and with all the revelations recently it’s only going to get worse ! You only have to look at the Jobs being advertised! Head of Social Engagement etc !
I notice more and more each day now I have left and it’s really scary ! I am choosing to use platforms that try to engage me less and I might have to pay for their services but I am happy to pay for an Advert free service with no frills !
It’s amazing how differently you feel without social media. Slowly my creativity is returning I am paining more ! My anxiety is less and my attention span is growing and I am more relaxed than I have ever been without the constant barrage of politics and the toxicity of Social Media.
Can’t wait to see where I am at once I come of Twitter.
I can’t wait to blog about it in 12 months time..
Article published from sqola MAN