Is it possible to leave Facebook?

(Posted originally to my Facebook feed.)

I keep trying to reclaim online time from Facebook, and then someone tags me or posts to my timeline, and my inner moderator kicks in.

And then there I am right back on Facebook again, with their web bugs and their GPS tracking. To me recently Facebook feels like the web version of talking to your friends on the phone while the NSA records your call, only plus baby pictures and pithy memes. (Oh-hi, NSA agent, how’s your day? Did I mention NSA? [Attempts Jedi hand-wave.])

I wonder sometimes if Facebook has made it so difficult to feel as if you have any privacy, that for some of us the only way to feel we’re not being spied on by the big-data-big-brother is to delete our accounts entirely–to commit Facebook-Seppuku.

… And now that I’ve said all that, I’m pretty sure that since I’m mentioning on Facebook, that I’m considering leaving, well, Facebook, I’m going to start getting a flood of “compelling” push notifications and emails saying how much my friends miss me and that I need to come back to Facebook and approve all those timeline posts and wish distant acquaintances “Happy Birthday” and the “like”…

I love it that my online life has brought me closer to those that I love, work with, and care about. I love that information now flows (mostly) so easily. I owe my livelihood to the Internet and the web.

But Facebook is *not* the Internet, people. It’s totally possible to interact engagingly online without it. Send some email. Start a website. Spread your footprint out to other services. Sure you won’t have quite so many “friends” “liking” your pictures or leaving pithy comments on your posts, but you might just get some intimacy back in return, and you’re going to have a hard time finding that inside the walls of Zuck’s castle.

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