If I’m being honest, I’d quite like to ditch Facebook. It is an insidious beast that is quietly evolving into little more than a virtual Speaker’s Corner and platform for egocentric self-promotion. So is Facebook actually actually bad for you?
I believe that it can be damaging, feeding insecurities in both our personal and professional lives and encouraging discontent.
A friend recently said to me “I don’t go on Facebook much these days, its full of people with their happy lives.”
How many of us know a young person (and I’m afraid they are usually young women) who posts endless pouting selfies, designed to elicit comments such as “wow, you are so beautiful”. Should our young people really be judged on looks alone? Aren’t we encouraging an increasingly shallow society and pandering to a celebrity culture where children grow up wanting to be famous?
And it’s not just our personal feed that can cause anxiety. It’s normal when starting out on a new venture to feel insecure. “Do I have a good idea?” “Is my product rubbish?” “Am I pitching it right?” “Will anyone want to buy my service or follow my blog?” When you create a business page on Facebook you are provided with statistics on how that page is performing: how many people have engaged with your latest post and who ‘likes’ it or has chosen to ‘hide’ your page. Checking the stats can quickly become an obsession leading to enormous self-doubt. It can feel very personal, chipping away at your self-confidence and leading you to ask yourself “Why don’t my Facebook ‘friends’ like what I’m doing?”
Love it or loathe it; live your life on it or sit silently stalking others; Facebook is one of the most powerful phenomena of the modern age, and as a marketing tool it is almighty with the potential to reach thousands of people in just a few clicks! So as a Blogger and small business owner I’d be shooting myself in the foot if I did ditch Facebook!
I haven’t even touched on trolling, its potential for cyber bullying or the impact Facebook has on face-to-face engagement. And then of course, there’s terrorism – but’s that’s a whole other story. In the meantime, I’d be really interested to hear what others think…