Social Media – should I stay or should I go ?

I was very lucky to be teaching in a Web Design program (at the Art Insitute of CA / San Diego) in the “naughts” (2000-2009) when social media showed up. I didn’t have to wait for an article in WIRED to see what was new – my students were swimming in it 24/7. Fast forward a few years and I had moved from Web to Audio and it was a challenge to keep students off Facebook during class time.

In fact, there was an idea – to call it a movement would be giving it too much credit – to create Facebook pages for each of our classes and put syllabi and assignments and due dates there, because “after all, that’s where the students ARE.” So you’d have one f2f session a week, then spend time Booking with them throughout the week. I remember thinking if this is what teaching has become, I’m going to do something else.

Cooler heads prevailed and that went away, then we started hearing that companies were moving to FB, and maybe re-thinking whether they needed to invest in an expensive custom website if they could – and had to – connect with customers on FB. I guess some smaller companies and organizations found that to be a good solution, but fortunately for the web program many more decided they needed a custom site. In the end education wound up using Blackboard, but that’s a far cry from FB where your class would be sharing space with baby pictures and political rants.

So I’ve never been a big fan of Facebook. I signed up for it in 06 or 07, along with Twitter and LinkedIn. Now I pop in about once a month to see what I have missed, then I’m good for another month. But the more I learn about the company, their policies and their business model – the more I want out.

I know my leaving is not a big deal, like when Walt Mossberg left, and there are friends who FB that I don’t see on Twitter or LinkedIn. That’s why I have stayed even while reading articles like this —

https://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2018/dec/21/quit-facebook-privacy-scandal-private-messages

So as 2019 rolls in I’m still there. But don’t be surprised if I’m gone by 2020.

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