“When I think of all the good times that I’ve wasted having good times
When I think of all the good time that’s been wasted having good times
When I was fighting
I could’ve done the right thing
My useless talking
I couldv’e been walking
Instead of complaining
I couldv’e been gaining
Talking ’bout good times!”
– Eric Burdon and the Animals (“Good Times”)
A few weeks ago, I had a three day suspension from posting or communicating on Facebook. Some people have referred to this as being put in “Facebook jail.” My crime? A web link that I had posted on my Facebook page announcing a new blog post had also posted a photograph that included artistic nudity in it.
So yes, as has been noted, while people can post all kind of hateful stuff on Facebook, showing some bare skin in a photograph can have you hauled off to prison.
Of course, it’s not just the hateful stuff that Facebook allows that shows the Zuckerberg hypocrisy. It’s the fact that Facebook allows advertisers like eBay to post nude photos in its advertisements without impunity. You can see several examples here that I’ve copied from my Facebook page. (Yes, I know that these ads only show things similar to the things that we’ve looked at on those advertisers sites, but hey – ignorance should no excuse in the eyes of the Facebook law!)
There is another saying: “absence makes the heart grow fonder.” Yes, being away from something can make you want it more, but there’s something else to consider: being away from something can also make you realize just how much you don’t need something.
So it is with Facebook. Three days in lock-up made me realize just how much I DON’T need it. As the song by Eric Burdon and the Animals says, there are better things to do with one’s time than simply having “good times.” Sure, it’s fun to see what everybody else is up to and checking out the links to things they’ve posted, but is it really time well spent? Can I be doing something better?
Yes, I think I can. I’ll be better off not having to spend so much time sitting in front of this computer trying to make sure I see everything that everybody has posted. I’ll be better off doing things more constructive like working on my photography, cleaning up my apartment, doing some reading or even watching a good film or television show.
I had considered totally removing myself from Facebook, and I have already deleted the Facebook app from my iPod. Still, I don’t want to go that far. Mark Zuckerberg and company use Facebook to benefit themselves, so I will do the same for myself. I will still use Facebook to communicate with people and I will still make notifications of my new blog posts (without posting any “offensive” material to avoid prison simply so that I can stay in touch with others). I have also been checking Facebook occasionally and very briefly just to see if anything actually IS worth looking at.
However, the days of staying on Facebook at length to check everything out are gone. The days of posting things about and arguing about politics and other things are gone.
They will not be missed.