I have done an unthinkable thing; I have opened a Facebook page. I opened one years ago, but closed it an hour later when a flood of minutia descended on me from, it seemed, just about everywhere but, as of a couple of days ago, I have a Facebook account again.
In the interim, Facebook has added a number of tools and controls for users so the information tsunami can be managed. I am not certain that the tsunami is actually being managed so much as ‘hidden’ from view but it is fair to say that there are more privacy settings than I remember.
I conduct a lot of research on the internet. Reading and querying for articles is a constant activity. There are more than 170 bookmarks in each of three web browsers here. I keep bumping up against the ‘end of the internet’ when a query ends on Facebook, where only members can visit the accounts of other members. One might say that this limitation has a ring of coercion about it but, in fairness, that is a characteristic of marketing just about everywhere.
As a member, I am compelled to think about categories and ‘tags.’ People I may know have to be ‘friends,’ ‘special friends,’ ‘friends of friends’, or ‘everyone’ but there is no category for ‘lost loves,’ ‘ex-spouses,’ ‘spouses’ or ‘high school sweethearts.’ One doesn’t forget these primary influences in our lives even as we make new relationships. Of course, there is a function that blocks anyone whose purpose is destructive or malicious but that doesn’t give room for someone one hasn’t seen for many years. People change.
People don’t always change the way we expect, or in ways we can see or even understand but everyone changes, gradually over time, as they cope with life experiences. Dawn and Ron Wojtyk (Ukrainian) have been friends for more than 35 years. They came to my wedding; they were in the congregation when I became a Christian at 31 and their friendship has endured through Christenings, weddings, and funerals. Even the term ‘special friends’ seems weak.
Ted and Esther Rathwell came into our lives January 10 1988. We have been ‘brothers’ and ‘sisters,’ as Ted puts it, ever since that day. They can never be just ‘friends.’ As you read this, you can think of people in your ‘friends’ list who are far more than friends to you.
Then there are the ads. Facebook scans everything you post for information to sell to advertisers. You can block these ads using adblockplus https://adblockplus.org/ or you can use adguard https://adguard.com/en/welcome.html which achieves the same objective using a different technique. Sure, the information collected for these advertising companies ensures that the ads you see are as relevant as possible to you, weather or not you require that service. On Facebook, you have to accept this.
You can do what I do. You can have your own website where you make every decision. You can do this alongside your Facebook page; they can work hand in hand, each encouraging the other. The best help for that can be found at WordPress https://wordpress.org/. I am not thrilled with the text editor, but compared to other services WordPress is the best.
Anyway, Facebook isn’t likely to change much just to suit me but it has been slowly evolving so I am trying again. I never thought I would write that. Will wonders ever cease?
Professional. Retired. Canadian.