Facebook is pretty horrible.
If it’s not an algorithm that makes you wonder if you’re seeing everything your friends post, even if you’re like me and click on “most recent” when you go on the page, it’s getting dragged into political disputes even though you try really, really hard not to. (“Just block him,” my wife said. “Then you won’t see his comments,” she said.)
And then, on top of that, does someone know all sorts of information about my best friend from high school because I took a silly quiz on what state I’m truly from that I’m pretty sure based the result on the most-stereotypical answer? (I will always be a New Yorker living in Massachusetts, but I referred to those demonic road structures by their Massachusetts name, “rotaries,” instead of the New York term, “traffic circles.”
So yeah, it would be easy to #deletefacebook, especially since I use Twitter a lot more these days, but then I think of three things I did just in the past few hours:
1. Wished a favorite co-worker in another office a happy birthday.
2. Goofed around with a friend over him trying to troll me years ago with the argument that “nope” is a verb. (Nope, it still isn’t.)
3. Got an update on a family member who just had major surgery. (By all accounts, he’s doing great!)
And that’s part of what sucks about Facebook … it doesn’t have to suck. It could be a place to have fun and keep up with friends and family and share vacation photos to watch the “likes” roll in without all the other garbage attached.
But it’s a business, and businesses want to make money. Enter, garbage, in the name of selling advertising.
“The thing about the ad model that is really important that aligns with our mission is that — our mission is to build a community for everyone in the world and to bring the world closer together. And a really important part of that is making a service that people can afford. A lot of the people, once you get past the first billion people, can’t afford to pay a lot. Therefore, having it be free and have a business model that is ad-supported ends up being really important and aligned.” That’s what Mark Zuckerberg told the New York Times.
Would I pay to have the kind of Facebook I wanted? Maybe, or maybe I’d decide a few ads or having to ask to read posts in chronological order isn’t all that much of an inconvenience.