Opinion

Tangled in the Web of Facebook

If you are like me, you check your Facebook account numerous times a day. Within the time span of completing one calc assignment, you have subconsciously clicked on your page over a dozen times. Whether you are liking a group, changing info in your “about me,” or selecting your default pic, you know that Facebook has got you.

You consider your life without it: You would not be able to keep in touch with loved friends or family in other parts of the world. You would be unable to see albums documenting that reunion party you missed. While these are valid reasons to keep your Facebook account, believe it or not, your life still might be better off without it.

If you are like me and you have big dreams, how can you give them your full focus if you are living on Facebook—dwelling, stalking, creeping? You have goals to achieve!

Admit it: You find yourself gazing at the profile of a “friend” you have never met or would never actually talk to in your day-to-day. You realize a friend has posted a status saying how awful you are without her using your name. You obsess over that guy in your psych class, constantly checking his wall. You post every little thing you do, down to what you ate for breakfast. Quite frankly, I am thrilled you were able to step away from Facebook that long to feed yourself! If you recognize any of this behavior as familiar, it is a red flag telling you to do better things with your time.

While Facebook has become a crucial means for communicating with loved ones, the online network is, for many, addictive, and therefore time-consuming. Anyone who is a Facebook junkie also knows the site is a breeding ground for drama. Whether you gasp at a mean comment, or spy on an ex, you really do not need that.

I am sure you can imagine alternate, more personal ways of keeping loved ones in your life other than Facebook. As for that cute guy in your psych class? Get up and talk to him in person. I promise he won’t bite—not in bad ways, at least. You and your friend have a disagreement? Talk it over face to face. Enough hiding online!

If you chose to keep your Facebook account, at least practice self-control; also, really consider your ever-growing group of eight hundred friends. Who are those people, after all? As far as “un-friending” goes, it is not as big a deal as some make it. Personally, when I un-friend someone, it is because I barely see them, I have never met them, or they have wronged me in some way. For the most part, if that person does not come to me asking why in the world I un-friended them, then I know I have made the right choice. Bullies and strangers should not have easy access to your life.

Ultimately, you would be most content if you terminated your Facebook account. In high school, when I deactivated mine for five months, I felt instantly free to re-shift my focus to bigger, better things. Contrary to popular belief, ridding yourself of Facebook expands your world, not shrinks it. Having wasted hours on Facebook since, I am once more going to deactivate my account. No more online social games, dramatic escapades, popularity contests, voyeurs or lost, precious lapses of time.

If you have any life goal, cut the distraction. And with that exam, that paper and those deadlines approaching, it is an even better move. If you insist you have not fallen into a Facebook frenzy, then go home and deactivate your account. I dare you.

Eric Geron is a senior majoring in creative writing and biology. He may be contacted at egeron@themiamihurricane.com.

March 6, 2011

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Eric Geron

Contributing Writer


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