Why I No Longer Use Facebook as My Primary Social Media

in #steemit4 years ago

Like many people, Facebook used to be my first choice for social media.

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For years, I didn't consider any alternative to Facebook. Even when popular alternatives arrived such as Twitter, Instagram, and others, I stuck with the Zuck for all my online social media use.

Eventually, I began using the platform to speak out about various political and socio-economic issues that I was passionate about. I knew this material would be somewhat controversial for many of my friends, but I felt the people in my life needed to hear it.

For context, this took place around 2010-2011, when the political climate was nowhere near as toxic and tense as it is today. I got on a large soapbox and likely alienated many friends in the process.

Over time, I stopped posting about such issues, as I had likely fallen into my own echo chamber. I'm curious how many people unfollowed me during this time, as I'm sure a few folks got fed up with my rants.

I ultimately stopped using Facebook to post anything.

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There were days where my consciousness was completely distracted from my actual day-to-day life, as I was eagerly awaiting the response to a thread or status update. I realized that this wasn't the way I wanted to live my life, and so I removed myself from the conversation. This happened around the mid-point of 2012.

I was still on the platform, but a silent observer, scrolling through other's status updates and posts, staying current but not providing any updates of my own. My endless debates with people, whether on forums or on Facebook, had taken up far more of my attention than was healthy.

For the next 5 years or so, I would remain almost completely silent across all social media. The value of sharing my perspective was lessened by the fact that people either didn't respond or did so in a way that was counterproductive. I had all but given up on utilizing social media at all, and was content to fade into the background for the rest of time.

And then...I discovered Steemit

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By total accident, I stumbled across the social media platform Steemit in early 2017. I was unhappy at my current job, and was considering my options for leaving, one of which included driving for Lyft until I figured out my next step.

I came across this post, which came as a revelation. Here this person was, discussing how they had left their corporate job to jump into the free-lance, gig economy and was loving it. And it just so happened that their post on Steemit had done well to the tune of a payout worth over $300 USD.

Prior to reading the post, I had never heard of Steemit, and didn't realize there was a social media platform that would actually pay you for posting valuable content. I had to investigate further, and decided to make my own account.

Sure enough, I was hooked.

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Steemit excelled at fostering civil discussion better than any other online community or platform I had ever been a part of. It's funny what happens when actual money is on the line. The incessant trolls lose their power. The divisive and heated arguments turn into a calm and reasoned discussion.

It was everything that Facebook and other platforms could never hope to mimic, and it was exactly what I needed in order to engage in an online community again. It was also a fantastic way to motivate me to begin writing again.

Prior to my time as a social worker, I was in the field of journalism. I eventually got out of the field after seeing where the state of media was heading, and I also wanted to make a more direct positive impact on the lives of others.

I stopped writing altogether and lost a creative outlet that I had received much satisfaction from. Crafting and creating a story, whether it was about a sports team, a news event, or just my own perspective was incredibly rewarding.

In discovering Steemit, I found a platform that was not only open and inviting, it also gave me the motivation to continue writing, as one of my posts might actually earn me something.

Light Bulb, Lightbulb, Light, Bulb, Energy, Electricity

Think about this. Every time you post on Facebook, Instagram, or Twitter, you empower the centralized platform. You give them more data about yourself and your friends, which they then sell to advertisers. Unless you develop a following and eventually sell or market a product yourself, you are basically working for free.

The more we learn about these social media sites, the more we grow to despise the creators of such platforms. Yet, we are still inevitably drawn back to using them because they have us hooked and we can't see any alternatives.

With the current political climate, I am even more detracted from fully speaking my mind on such platforms, as the level of discourse on Facebook is at an insane fevered pitch.

If you find yourself reading this because you clicked on it through my link on Facebook, I want to say that there is an alternative and it is right here on Steemit. Regardless of if you receive substantial payouts or not, I am confident you will love the sense of community support and the even-keeled political discussion that occurs here.

We don't have to fully give up Facebook, as I still use it for event promotion and as a way to stay in touch with people I haven't seen or talked to in a while.

However, the more we give up centralized platforms in favor of decentralized sites such as Steemit, the less control big corporations and governments will have over our lives, and the more value we will all receive, monetary or otherwise. Regardless of your political leanings, we can probably agree that's a good thing.

All uncredited pictures from the pixabay.com

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Good for you! I think if people can actually step away from FB, even their main dev team KNOWS that it is addictive, they will shake their heads and regret not trying it sooner! I know many are coming around though and glad to see more new faces!! Good post!!

I hear you! I haven’t entirely come off Facebook but I do feel a bit dirty every time I post there now. Seems like a big waste of time!

Yeah, it's kind of an icky place. I have a degree of cognitive disonnance when I'm there because I dont want to feed the beast.

Right on! My wife is a big time Facebook addict; I'm still trying to convince her to give Steem a try. Maybe one day I'll manage to pull her away from the Evil Empire!

It's funny what happens when actual money is on the line. The incessant trolls lose their power. The divisive and heated arguments turn into a calm and reasoned discussion.

This part especially resonates with me. Before Steemit I used to read the cryptocurrency forums on Reddit a lot. Upon joining Steemit I was blown away by how reasoned and well written discussions seemed compared to the sewers of sludge on Reddit. Sure, we've still got our occasional trolls and all those annoying "great post! resteemed! vote for me too!" noise comments, but hey, it's a big step in the right direction.

I agree! Steemit gives the people the power to use their time and energy to benefit everyone. Facebook and social media companies spy on us for their profit... it’s scary what traditional social media has done to society... I love steemit and how it helps us earn crypto. My son just got to buy a beanie and a hat pin. My Man @amvanaken and I do crypto videos and giveaway 5 @SmartCash daily. We are @encryptdcouple if you are interested. Hope you can get your wife over to Steemit, it’s so much fun here!

Haha, yeah most of my family and friends are still locked into beastbook. Slowly but surely, I hope to get people over here and away from the grasp of Zuck and co.

Reddit is a joke by comparison, as is basically any other forum. Inevitably, it delves into irrational flame wars when serious topics are discussed.

The steemit trolls of 'great post, follow me!' are tame and easily ignored by comparison.

Haha Beastbook lol I have never heard that one:) I think it’s funny how people want to spend time and energy fighting over social media when there are ways to harness our energy in a positive way over the inter webs. For real lol!!!

Hi @ cryptomancer! Thanks for sharing your pov... Now, here’s the latest findings from Facebook’s newsroom itself:

Facebook: A Force For Good Or For Evil

I totally agree with you 👍 You are definitely right.
Getting into steemit community is a whole package. That is why opening my steemit account has been a part of my daily routine. I have so much to learn primarily and earn in the future. 😊 @colinhoward

Absolutely! A well thought out post on Steemit each day can go a long way over time. Welcome :)

I finally stopped using Facebook to post anything =>
this is true
I only post on facebook because there are many friends I use it
For my country, facebook has become a landfill

@colinhoward Thank you for making a post like this! I think that more people should move day by day to the platform like steemit, this is my first day here, I am very excited about the future of this platform

You bet! Welcome to one of best communities around...you're going to like it here im sure :)

Thank you soo much! I appreciate it! I will start uploading my vieos to steemit very soon :)

The best part of Facebook is the random, insane meltdowns that otherwise normal people sometimes have, making the poor decision to share it with the internet.

LOL, yeah totally. I posted a very non-threatening update encouraging civility and discouraging blind ideological thinking and a person lost their mind over it, resorting to petty comments about my race, gender, and sex (surprise surprise).

It reminded me why I no longer attempt such discussion on Facebook. I think it's gotten much worse in the age of Trump/SJWism

Well it is their luck that they can delete those posts :D
When Steemit goes viral, some of the mistakes will be seen forever :D :D Some people have to learn it the hard way I guess

The day I joined steemit, the fact that people here are quite serious with their work became quite apparent to me. As a Philosophy enthusiast, this was exactly what I wanted. All those empty talks and "Chilling with XYZ and 35 Others" were driving me to insanity.

I know many people who are dragged down so sharply from their real intellectual pursuits due to Facebook. Instead of questioning things and acquiring real knowledge, they used to feel jealous that someone bought a Nike (OMG! How did that son of a begger...?!) and they used to become insecure as hell. They couldn't even sleep at night. Wow.

Steemit is a brilliant alternative. It's marvellous in its idea and design. I hope we save many more humans from the entrapment of low existence as that's exactly what steemit has been doing.

Great post @colinhoward! I feel much like you do.

I never even think of facebook anymore, except when people in my life bring it up to me like I am missing out on something for not having checked in there in a long time.

I should probably delete the profile. I don't care for the platform at all and only have kept it up this long, because I have Zapier posting my steemit posts to my old fanpage. (Not a great reason to stay on there, to be honest.)

I finally stopped using Facebook to post anything =>
this is true
I only post on facebook because there are many friends I use it
For my country, facebook has become a dumping ground

I am still using my traditional social media platforms to promote STEEM and the various apps available on it. Steepshot Zappl etc...

There are still many people I care about that I want to convert and they are all on Facebook.

Keep on being an ambassador for STEEM. Great article.

I appreciate your sharing your perspective and can resonate. Whenever I post things on social media if it is a picture of me I get likes and comments like crazy. They minute it is something from my Heart it’s like crickets, no one responds, or they do so in a negative way. I love being on steemit and find so much of a better community here. I love how engaged everyone is and how the driving factor is people being themselves and promoting what they love. I am loving this platform and learning more about it:)

Yeah it's an overall inspiring place to spend time on the web. A light in a sea of darkness, so to speak.

So do I! Steemit has a great communty, to make things interesting, this my first official day here on steemit. Facebook started fading away back in 2013

Enjoy!! You are gonna love it here :)

I don't use it at all from about 2 months. And this probably will stay this way. I got seemit now !😎

This is why I deactivated my Facebook and switched to steemit, and I must say, it’s an addiction like no other

...and yet certain political views are rife on facebook. If a platform is politically motivated I'm not interested in the content that they want to feed to me. Either give me everything that I don't personally block or I will stop using these platforms.

Gg boy ;;;)))) I'm not sure she will accept ;))

No one can hear you on facebook ,i think not only on fb but also on other social media because today no one accept reality.I am using facebook from about 8 yeas but i never shared my feeling or my opinion on fb because i know the reality :)
And don't worry you can share your opinion with us here :) We will listen you and support you :)

Hi @colinhoward! I concur & here's more to Facebook than meets the eye...

Facebook: A Force For Good Or For Evil

You are quiet right about FB. There appears to be silence when you have something deep to say. Its almost as if there is an unwritten code "don't rock the boat" I am glad I found Steemit. Its very productive and I am sure it has improved my ability to clearly articulate my ideas.