Why I’m Not on Facebook

smart phone with scrabble letters

Facebook has 2.2 billion worldwide users, and I’m happy to admit I’m not one of them. Many years ago I considered signing up, but knowing others, some unknown to me, might see into my personal life left me uneasy.

I willingly share events – both joyous and not so joyous – with my friends. My phone contains hundreds of pictures I’ve shown to people at work, neighbors, family and friends. I still own a land-line phone as well as a cellphone with unlimited usage, which I use all the time to catch up with those I care about.

As a social person, many wonder why I’m unwilling to open a Facebook account, and though I’ve said countless times, I’m not keen about others peering into my life without my knowledge, there’s another reason I didn’t hop onto the Facebook train that I haven’t been open about.

The term “Fake News” is constantly bandied by politicians and news outlets, and though I agree much of today’s headlines have a slant, I wouldn’t necessarily call them fake. I believe that sentiment holds true for many Facebook users. People post vacation photos, dining out experiences, birthday wishes, outings with friends and family – all positive, wonderful things – but in reality, those same people might be going through a divorce, losing their job, struggling financially, or suffering other problems they may not be willing to share.

I’m not saying “your” truth needs to be splashed on Facebook, but it seems one-sided. We know people use Facebook as a social comparison tool, so only posting the “good” may have a negative reaction for the reader. For instance, would you tell someone whose just lost her job that you received a promotion and a big salary bump? Or would you share pictures of your European vacation with someone that could only afford a staycation this year? I doubt it. Yet you post it.

And now that we’ve learned that Facebook has shared our personal data with a multitude of worldwide companies makes me even more uneasy.

Call me old fashioned, but I still believe in face-to-face or voice-to-voice interactions. I need to see expressions and hear inflections in people’s voices to carry on a conversation. I’m sensitive that way, and I don’t see it changing anytime soon.