Blog / 2020 / Connecting Versus Collecting

November 17, 2020

When I announced six weeks ago that I’d be deleting Facebook and Instagram by the end of the year, I had a pretty solid idea of how I was going to bow out of the social media party:

  1. October would be regular posts explaining all the different facets of why.
  2. November would be a weekly reminder that I was leaving, plus I’d be messaging people privately.
  3. December would consist of one last public goodbye 24 hours before I finally deleted.

But like all the best laid plans of mice and Gwenn, this strategy fell apart pretty quickly. I canceled my accounts last week, and the reason probably won’t surprise you: I was disgusted by people’s behavior.

harvest mouse drawing by wildlife artist Gwenn Seemel
For prints and t-shirts with this image, vist my Redbubble shop.

Specifically, it was the continued onslaught of friend requests that were disheartening, because, by this point, both profiles were covered with announcements that I was leaving. And if there wasn’t anywhere you could look without realizing that my pages weren’t long for this world wide web, and still the friending was unending, then there was only one possible explanation.

People don’t even look at your page first. They’re just “collecting” you by adding a number to their friend total.

I don’t blame them. They’re doing exactly what Facebook has trained them to do, and I refuse to be upset with any of us for being the victims of such a thorough manipulation. That said, I’m also done pretending that this company’s influence over us is okay.

If you want to connect with me now, it’ll require more than a passive click. You’ll have to write me something about yourself and deal with the fact that it’ll make me such a happy little Gwenn mouse to hear from you.


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