I have danced around this idea for a while, I even hinted at this a little bit the other day, but mostly because it’s not the kind of thing you’re supposed to have floating around in your head right before my book Framing Faith comes out and then to say it out loud is like standing naked in Times Square.
So here it is… Facebook is a waste of time.
To be clear Facebook has its uses… it helps connect us to people, people we know, people we somewhat know, and people we have no clue who they are. I mean Facebook is a great tool that has help me foster long lost friendships and friendships halfway around the world. You have to admit its way better than getting those “Family Newsletter Updates” at Christmas.
The beauty of this social network is really awesome, but also with each like and interaction it leads us to instant satisfaction and gratification allowing us real-time status on how people view our thoughts, pictures, friends, and our life. It allows us to connect and consume relationships at an alarming rate, ultimately filling us with a false sense of pride that we “know” or are “friends” with a gazillion people. And once we get to the top of the social spectrum we find ourselves lonely in a crowd of thousands.
To be honest, when I joined Facebook it was pure but over time I found myself broadening my reach. I searched for people who I once knew, but somehow we ended up going our own ways. I found people I met once at a party or even on an assignment. But what I quickly noticed I became a hoarder of relationships and as I would add a friend my web of connections grew broader but shallower, as it has happened for many of us. I also became more aware of those who appeared in my feed and more isolated from this right in front of me.
I don’t think this is what was intended for us.
I’m not anti-Facebook, but the point I have come to realize is the need to be in the moment to be enraptured with the relationships that are present and accountable in our lives first. Far to many times, we indulge in the online relationships more than who are right in front of us trying to get our attention. It’s all about moderation.
How often do you feel that you are ‘in tune’ with the people around you?