Facebook is a social phenomenon. The 10 billion dollar a year juggernaut created by Mark Zuckerberg and some buddies at Harvard who ended up bickering in court have a reported 2 billion users a month worldwide, yes that’s billion.
Since 2004 it’s brought people together from all over the world and let users share their cat photos more times than you’d like. It’s the ultimate voyeurism where people can share their lives as much or as little as they like.
Do you care what your Aunty had for breakfast? Probably not, but at least you know what she’s up to at 7.30 on a Friday morning, yay. Of course there is the business opportunities, promotion, charities, political and religious groups and a host of other ‘connections’ everyone is trying to make.
You could say it’s a source for good and evil, but what’s the cost? If you’ve got an opinion on just about anything be prepared for some blowback or just downright hate. For every cluster of people that are on your side there’s bound to be a few noses you’ll get out of joint.
Friendships and even marriages have dissolved over an opinion on Facebook that’s turned into an unfriend in real life. Is it worth having an opinion on something at the risk of offending your so-called best friend?
I’ll admit I’m not on Facebook, never have been. I’m on Twitter primarily because of the tennis website Rich Berman and I started five years ago. We use Twitter as a promotional tool but I do admit I’ll surf around and post other stuff that interests me.
Twitter has an anonymous element to it that I like, its short and nobody seems to be offended if you don’t ‘follow’ them. Some trolls have visited me in the past, but I laughed at that crap rather than get in to a back and forth.
Then of course there is the time factor; it’s easy to get sucked in to the social media vortex, an early morning 10 minutes looking around turns into 2 hours of mind numbing viewing, which is one of the reason Zuckerberg is one of the richest men on Earth, the addiction feeds his wallet.
Also, the rumors have danced around for years that Facebook shares info with the CIA and can listen in to your conversations if your App is still open or that the Department of Defense actually created Facebook as a ‘monitoring’ tool.
Regardless, I’ll keep to my Twitter and live vicariously through other Facebook users. If I ever feel the need to track down that kid I played soccer with in 4th grade I’ll be sure to let the CIA know so they can sign me up to the big ‘F’, or maybe I just need to ‘think it’ and wammo I’ll be on Facebook.