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Faults in the Clouds of Delusion

17 November, 2017 (10:54) | Facebook | By: Ian Burdon

(added: since writing the post below, I’ve reduced the number of Twitter accounts I follow by around 70–about 14%–and muted several more.)

Tomorrow will mark a year since I deactivated my Facebook account.

I haven’t been away completely–I logged in a couple of times for family events and photographs, but on the few times I’ve gone back in recently, I’ve only stayed around 10 minutes max.

The process of deactivating is an interesting exercise in emotional blackmail, culminating in the display of several FB “friends” who’ll miss me if I go, which only goes to demonstrate the limited intelligence of algorithms. Optionally, you can also advise FB of the reasons why you’re deactivating the account. Sometimes I used quotes from Twin Peaks (This is the water, this is the well; drink full and descend. The horse is the white of the eyes and the darkness within). Most recently I went with the Grateful Dead (Dark Star crashes, pouring light into ashes. Reason tatters, the forces tear loose from the axis. Starlight casting for faults in the clouds of delusion…).

Anyway, I have no desire to reactivate the account, except for those family occasions when it has its uses.

My main social media interaction is on Twitter, which I also try and limit. I  think I’ll try and limit it even more. This morning, scrolling through the feed, I found myself experiencing the same build up of tension and irritation that led me to drop off Facebook.

The nature of the way Twitter is changing, letting me see everything that people I follow like or respond to, means that my timeline, which I tried to develop to be fun and informative, is increasingly full of toxicity, and I don’t see any need to subject myself to that. Another thinning of the numbers of people I follow is long overdue, but I don’t think that will solve matters in the long run: the medium is being gamed by poisonous people and I don’t need that in my life.

In the meantime, here’s Zeynep Tufekci to cheer you up.

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