READER REPORT:

Facebook app? Unlike

MATT WISHART
Last updated 10:00 10/06/2014
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ROBERT GALBRAITH / Reuters

NOTHING PERSONAL: Sorry Mark Zuckerberg, but Matt Wishart is trying to quit the site you started.

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When Edward Snowden broke the news about global data collection going on behind our backs, I started to rethink my actions online.

It's not that I was doing anything wrong, but just the thought of having my data being swept up in a big net for a potential future use scared me a little bit.

I pondered on the fact that we update every aspect of our lives online for the world to see, sharing the most intimate parts of our lives on Facebook, Twitter, and the rest of the social media sites.

All this can be then used for creating a global profile of the world's occupants - giving the hand that feeds us, total control. 

That is when I actually had a good look at what I saw on my Facebook news feed. I was sharing my statuses and photos with over 600 friends, most of which I had met only a few times or were school acquaintances that I had zero intention of actually talking to. 

I would scroll through my news feed, every day, every hour, just updating myself on the lives of others, many of whom I had nothing to do with. It was then that I realised I was wasting a lot of my time glued to a phone or laptop, for no good reason other than boredom. 

Have a think about it, when you scroll through your own news feed every day, what do you feel when you are watching these people post their thoughts on Facebook? I get rather bored. I don't smile or laugh; I may stifle a light chuckle once or twice a week, but that's about it. 

So I deleted Facebook on my phone to begin the process of removing myself from the constant need to share my life over the net.

I went out and found something useful to do,  and tried to be comfortable waiting for someone with my own thoughts, not needing to be glued to my phone constantly. It was refreshing to say the least. 

I have yet to delete my Facebook account altogether. I am drawn in like an addict and it's surprisingly a hard fix to kick.

Since the advent of Facebook, we have become a generation of screen watchers, constantly searching for our fix and our need to be accepted and seen, sharing the most intimate of our lives with anyone who will listen.

We have lost our social skills to a point, where turning around on a busy street is initiated by pretending to look at our phones and then trying to look as if we need to do something important. 

We have and are missing so much of the world around us to a degree. I am at the point now where I want to give up the social media fix and watch the world through my own eyes, rather than the rest of the nations. I want to stop being a sheep, guided by the mildly bright light of a four-inch screen.


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