8.16.2012

And Then, I Threw It Out The Window

This week, the fearless leader of our company had to make a difficult decision. It wasn't pretty and it wasn't nice, and it shook us all just a bit. I'm glad I'm not her.

The {DAY AFTER}, we were just starting our regularly scheduled phone meeting when she decided to lighten the mood and send me this cartoon via email. I believe I might have snorted when it arrived. I'm not into yoga and meditation, but tell me, who hasn't felt like doing this to Facebook at some point??


I know I'm not alone. Delete the drama, the "Jenny Jones liked 97.6 WXYZ's picture of a dog kissing a pig" notifications, the hurt feelings and unnecessary information that people feel compelled to share. No, I don't want to play "WORDS" with you spelling bee's made me anxious enough as a child. No, I don't want to share my birthday on your Facebook calendar - is the notification at the top of the screen that says"Joe Smith's Birthday is TODAY" too hard to figure out?

My moment for wanting to pull the plug came after the whole Chick-fil-A incident. Now, I'm not getting into the politics of that here, so don't run screaming, but I was ready to chuck the computer out the window after reading a page of comments (poorly spelled and grammatically suicidal) about those who "love" Chick-fil-A, and those who don't. {That's putting it nicely, right?}

However, despite my own personal opinion and actions on that topic (waffle fries = yum, first amendment = good), it wasn't the folks who were for or against a privately owned company that drove me to the breaking point. It was the friends who were refusing to take a stand on either side, but loudly complained about being "forced" to see all the Chick-fil-A references in their news feed.

Reality check. You're talking about Facebook. Just think about that for a minute.

When did a completely fluffy social media site, one where everyone can share what's on their minds, baked in their oven, birthed from their womb, read in the news, playing on YouTube, or recently pinned on Pinterest, become something we are forced to view? Chick-fil-A was in the news for a week, at best. If you don't want to know - don't log on. Same goes for all those people who complain when the "spoilers" tell who won a football game, Olympic event, or American Idol.

It's really not complicated, and it's certainly not worth posting an angry Facebook status. Unless you want attention. In that case, type away. I'm not trying to point fingers or be mean, but when every fifth post on my home page is a cry for attention, my delete finger gets itchy.

Part of my job involves using Facebook (and other forms of social media) to support and promote clients, so I can't ever completely give it up, but I can control how much I view. As we head into the election season, I'm already realizing that I'm going to have to do just that...my blood pressure won't take much more.

What is YOUR pet peeve about Facebook or other social media sites?
{You can vent, I support the First Amendment}

13 comments:

  1. I really hate the repin this if you love Jesus/hate cancer/are against the slaughter of kittens kinda posts, especially when accompanied by a guilt trip. Everyone hates cancer, sane people tend to not be in favour of the gratuitous killing of kittens and I'm pretty sure that isn't how Jesus wanted to be represented.

    Then there is the check-ins at/comments about being in boring places. If they are somewhere interesting or have something particularly witty to say check-ins can be fun but I generally don't care that much that people have arrived at lecture theater 17a or are on the train.

    Then there is all the invites and newsfeed updates for various games. Just when I think I have them all blocked, more emerge to annoy me.

    On a lighter note, I enjoy this take on Facebook silliness http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mrnPR37X7u4

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. AMEN Joanna!!! The share if you love/hate posts drive me nuts!!! Carrie, this was an awesome post! I love your take on this and I agree with you.
      Along with the love/hate share posts, I really don't like seeing someone's conversation with someone else that really should be sent in a message. But instead of doing that, they write on each other's wall, maybe because they want everyone to see it?? I don't know, but that always drives me nuts.

      Delete
  2. I use facebook as entertainment, so it really upsets me when a picture of an injured, no, not injured, mutilated dog (or other animal) is posted. Yes, I am sad that animals are treated cruelly, and certainly believe the owner of said dog should be prosecuted, but there is nothing anyone on facebook can do about that dog, so why post pictures of it?

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  3. Can I just say "ditto" to everything Joanna mentioned? The guilt trips, the check-ins (who cares if you're mayor of the mall?), and the endless game requests.

    Also, complainers. Whether it's about the latest facebook updates, or the weather, or the current events being talking about in everyone's status - just get over it! You can't change it, so deal with it, withOUT making a stink. Especially the complaints about facebook: if you don't like it, don't use it! Nobody's forcing you!

    ReplyDelete
  4. I wanted to "like" the above comments... wow, facebook really has me by the hair. There is a scary breed of human born of social media who think: "I am doing something productive by posting a picture to prove that I love Jesus (or hate abuse etc etc)" or "I am bonding with my friends (by sitting alone behind my computer screen and ranting)."

    Personally, Facebook is a means to stay in touch with my friends and family on the other side of the country and share photos with them and odd happenings. We Skype, we chat on the phone, we send cards, and this is another way to close the distance a little more until we save up for plane tickets. Today I got caught up in another vague political post, with no substantial information to back up it's claims, and wasted 7 minutes of my life. All for what? To argue a point to 3 people that will vehemently disagree? I fell into the trap.

    *sigh*

    Social media is a great thing in it's simple form - connecting people over long distances. It is also a mad scientist that prods complacency and joins in the fight to guide humanity to certain doom.

    What can we use to combat this? What will pull people away from computers and propel us to loving Jesus through actions??

    It's obviously time for me to log off. Thanks for writing!

    ReplyDelete
  5. Welp, I guess since I'm one of the "friends" who refused to take a stand on the chicken sandwich issue but complained about the multitude of posts in my feed, I should explain my actions.

    Here's why I did and didn't do what I did and didn't do: When the divide and conquer media chooses to ignite a story into a raging "us vs. them" firestorm and the lemmings on facebook (and other social media sites) take the bait I find it annoying.

    This issue is much more deeply complicated than waffle fries and first amendment rights. As Christians, if we aren't aware of that then we are not just "not of the world" we are not in the world either. In this instance a love of waffle fries was communicating much, much more to those on the other side. Whether that's intentional or not, it's reality.

    This issue deserves thoughtful, thorough, respectful conversation not megaphone blasts from facebook statuses. So when I saw Christians using their megaphones to scream about waffle fries and greasy chicken sandwiches it made sad. Well, sad and annoyed. I was sad and annoyed because your "first amendment rights" are not only making you look like a bigot to 50% of the population - they are also misrepresenting Christ and failing to love and care for the very people we are called to serve. Just because you HAVE an opinion doesn't mean it's right, doesn't mean it's kind and doesn't mean I want to hear it.

    As a person with friends & family on both sides of this divisive and explosive issue, I didn't find it productive or respectful to champion either side of this (I'll say it again) MEDIA FUELED argument.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. First things first - this wasn't personal about you, Molly. I sincerely apologize if it came across that way - not intentional!! Actually, I didn't even think about you when I was writing this, I was thinking about some other friends who never get on FB, and then when they decided to pop in, they complained. For some reason, it just set me off. If you don't want to take a side - that's cool. But why bring it up at all? That was kind of my point. Apparently, that wasn't communicated clearly.

      I agree and disagree with your stance, but I absolutely agree that the whole thing was media fueled. Although I have gotten involved with these things in the past on Facebook, I quickly learned that it wasn't the place for a discussion. However, I DID chime in on this a time or two because it was so ridiculous. TO ME, this was a purely political issue. I won't get into it here - if you read what I wrote on FB (before you hid me {wink, wink}), then you know what I thought about it.

      I get the feeling we might not agree politically about things, but that's okay. It's a free country. :-) We might not even agree on some Biblical issues, but we are still sisters in Christ. The main thing that I want you to take away from this is NOT that I'm pointing a finger at you (because I WASN'T), simply that Facebook is often more trouble than it's worth, because - like it or not - people WILL put their opinions openly out there. I just have to figure out how to rise above and ignore it in the future. :) As I said on Twitter, "Opinions are like armpits. Everyone has them, and they ALL stink." ;-)

      I hope you'll come back here and maybe even unhide me on FB. I'll do my best to keep my opinions to myself. ;-)

      Delete
  6. Here's what I love about facebook: it is a forum to connect (and reconnect) with people, initiate, re-establish and expand relationships that might otherwise go unnourished. I like that it is an environment where I can help out by doing what I can to increase awareness of the things that interest me and benefit other people. When that same venue is used to air out the dirty laundry of our dysfunctional personal lives or to mindlessly perpetuate misrepresentations of reality (read slander) it irritates me. Yes, I volunteer to "invest my time" on FB, but it would be a lot more pleasant if more people would abide by the same rules of social conduct we expect in real life encounters.

    ReplyDelete
  7. love. this.

    FB definitely makes it easy to broadcast things you might NEVER say in face to face conversations. Sometimes that's a good thing - most of the time it seems it isn't.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. AGREE!!!! I think if these discussions were held in real life, 1) They either wouldn't happen because no one actually has the guts to say them in person, or 2) They would use different words and be a little more careful about what they say or how they say it. Plus, tone of voice does wonders to either heat it up or calm things down.

      Delete
    2. True story, Carrie! Tone of voice is the most essential element of communication missing from virtual conversations. So often what we mean is transferred by how we say it and that is all but lost in an email, IM, FB post, blog comment, etc... However, there is also an opportunity for us to become better writers as we strive to get across what our hearts truly mean to relate in this hamstrung venue.

      Delete
  8. I don't particularly like all the political postings or wish-we-were-an-issue kindof posts. I do mind the hateful, hurtful, pointed, downright mean posts that I often see on FB. I've tried hiding the particular person who is the worst at this but somehow they keep coming through. It really reflects badly in my opinion if someone can't be kind and respectful to someone who disagrees with them.

    Just my 2 cents.

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  9. All I have to say is that I've been finding the "hide story" and "unsubscribe from ___" a lot lately.

    ReplyDelete

There are more than 400,000 words in the English language. My only request of you is this: Use them wisely.

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