Sunday, November 15, 2015

Using Facebook as a Weapon



Facebook is advertised as the chain that links people and societies together.  Mark Zuckerburg, Facebook's big cheese, claims that the website exists to "create a more connected world."  To me, Facebook (and other (a)social media) are websites that end up sucking people's time from their lives, leaving them with negative thoughts of jealousy, anger, sadness, and regret.  However, there is another sinister side to Facebook that I have not talked too much about.  It is an important aspect of Facebook that has caused great damage in many lives.  I have seen it firsthand in my own life.  It is using Facebook as a weapon.  Below I will discuss a few ways in which Facebook is used as a weapon.  I may have left something out.  If you see something that should be added, or if you want to share your own experiences, please leave a comment.

Unfriending People

Relationships and friends are vitally important to Facebook users.  (a)social media would not exist without all the online "connections" that exist between people.  Yet, sometimes people get angry at others, or do not agree with their views and, as a result, punish them.  This is most often done by unfriending the person.

Unfriending oftentimes is used to send a strong message to the other person.  It's a message that states that the person is angry at you and has acted on that anger.  It is a message that states that you did something wrong and that you should be sorry.  The wrong could be anything - minor or major.  It could be a differing political view, your religious views, or the fact that you said something wrong on Facebook (which is a real danger since many people have no personal filter when it comes to writing on Facebook).  It could be that that the person just does not like you.  It could be that the person wants to control you.  No matter what reason it is, if you are using Facebook as a form of punishment, you might want to think about the maturity of such an action.

I have unfriended people before when I was a Facebook user.  I tried to do it in a way that they would not notice it.  I do not like to hurt others.  There are legitimate reasons to remove a person as a friend on (a)social media.  For example, if you do not know that person well and there is no real relationship, you might as well move on.  However, even when fighting with a person over a personal view, should you remove them?  I think that when the friendship seems totally irreconcilable, then it's time to say goodbye.  Yet, the truth is, I see too many people unfriend a person to friend them a few days later and pretend nothing happened.  It ends up looking and feeling awkward.  It is a waste of time.

As a Facebook user, you are bound to be a part of the "friend and unfriend merry-go-round" that is part of the Facebook culture.  Historically it has never been normal to be exposed to every political view and every aspect of all of your friends and acquaintances lives.   Some stuff is made public on the internet that is really none of my business and I should have never known about a person.  And, I am sure that I said some things that were better kept between me and my family (or just to myself).  The truth is, we talk far too much on Facebook, and that talking gets us into serious trouble more often than not.

Liking One Person's Posts and Ignoring Another's

Some people use the like button as a weapon.  Some will like every post but yours or ignore your posts on purpose.  I have seen people that would like every one of another person's pictures.  Hundreds of pictures.  Almost each and every one.  Yet, this person rarely liked anything that another person that was related to her.  It caused some jealousy issues and made that other person feel left out.  This blatant favoritism can be used as a weapon to control another.  It is an issue that many deal with.  If you are dealing with this in your own life, could you please explain to me why you are on Facebook?

Trolling and Lying

Some people use Facebook as a means to troll others.  It is not yet as bad as Twitter, which is full of some of the the most vile comments on the internet, but many are trying to troll others on Facebook and some are devising some new ways to get at others as I write this.  While this is harder to do when people make private profiles, trolls do exist through various news stories and political posts.  Many people have created famous memes and images that have been used to troll the world into believing something that is completely fake.  And people mistake these outright lies for knowledge and they share it with others.  How sad.



Bragging to Make Others Feel Inferior

Bragging about life is another way in which Facebook is used as a weapon.  In the wake of the tragedy in France, a Facebook user told me that he was bragging about his great apartment that overlooked One World Trade Center, which was all lit up in the French tricolor.  This was said to be an attempt to outdo a relative who was sharing his sympathy about the attacks.  Seriously?  Many are on Facebook for the sole purpose of bragging about their careers, leisure time, lifestyles, educational attainments, money, etc.  Some will use any excuse to brag about their lives.  Many of these people do so to get at relatives/siblings, ex-girlfriends/boyfriends, spouses, friends, classmates, etc.  Wealth comes and goes.  We all live and die.  So why are you wasting your time on the internet instead of enjoying life?  If you are bragging about life and are glued to Facebook, you really have nothing at all to brag about.  Facebook addiction is not anything that should be envied, and instead of bragging about your life, you should come to this site and see why Facebook and (a)social media is toxic.

Why Do You Spend Time On Facebook?  Don't You Have Better Things to Do With Your Life?!

I have written a lot on this website about how I feel Facebook is a toxic pastime.  I have said over and over for the past few years how Facebook is a time eater that gives a person nothing back for the amount of time that is spent on the site.  Facebook may also be a tool to gather information from individual users, and a huge part of the world is willing to freely share their lives and personal information on the internet because they are addicted!!  You are giving your private data out to a company that has shown over and over again that it can not be trusted, yet many do not care.  Many do not care that they log off the site feeling depressed and self loathing.  Many do not seem to care that they go through each day feeling lethargic due to the comparisons that they have made with other people.  Many will place themselves on a website where they are exposed to constant bragging and political nonsense.  What is the gain?  Tell me that.  The main excuse I hear is that it "allows me to keep in touch with others."  Would the world be so horrible if you had to keep in touch with others through e-mail or via phone?  Would your life really be that awful if you did not have hundreds of connections through an (a)social media website?

How we spend our time is a choice.  I hope you make the right choice and spend your time in a positive, uplifting and productive way.  Being on Facebook is not a positive, uplifting or productive pastime.  Nobody has been able to tell me with a straight face that their time spent on their personal Facebook page has been productive.  You are wasting your time.  But, the good news is that you can leave at any time you wish!  You can end it all and enter into a more full life.  Now is the time for change.  It feels good to let go.  You will be tempted to return.  I won't deny that.  Even I have been tempted over and over again, and I have given in a lot.  Every time I am smacked alongside the head by something I read.  Every time I am baffled by the time I waste on the site.  Even if it is just fifteen minutes a day - it adds up.  Yet, it is rarely just fifteen minutes a day.  It's usually much, much more.  How much time are you serving on Facebook?  Are you a prisoner to (a)social media?  Then do yourself perhaps the biggest favor you have ever done in your life: Quit now.  Your life will be much better.  That's something I truly believe and that's why I am still writing on this website years after creating it.  Stay strong and don't give into the pressure to be on these websites.  Remember, it is your choice, it is your life.  Unconnect from (a)social media and reconnect with the world.

23 comments:

  1. I found this site yesterday and it speaks volumes to me; it's just what I need right now; it's time for a change. You're an interesting person and a fine writer. Keep up the great work..

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    1. I agree with all of the above!! FB is a negative place in so many ways,people do try and hurt others by ignoring their posts,by unfriending,and so on, you would think if anyone has a problem with another person on FB they would talk it out instead of being a coward by doing these hurtful things on a social network that is supposed to bring people closer to each other but instead is being used to hurt someone!! How shameful that this is happening when before social networking was around people had to be one on one with each other in solving any problems!! I think its sad what the world is coming to in this regard!!

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  2. I don't like the fact face book isn't doing anything productive, rather than spending so much time on it doing what? Arguing over subjects that people agree or don't agree on! What good does this do? Some of the news stories are interesting, You can get that other ways,I think face book has more negative than positive about it!! It can be a place of ignoring others and hurting feelings!!

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    1. I agree which is why I'm on my 3rd day of detox. Today I went in and made a few photos private, and saw the ticker on the right showing all my 'friends' liking things, commenting on things and it just made me feel sad. I think it's pathetic to see middle-aged people bragging and begging for attention by posting photos of their house, or their new haircut, or where they went on vacation to hundreds of people. I had ZERO desire today to click on "Home" to see my News Feed. I quickly got out of there whereas last week I would spend an hour going through the News Feed, only to find myself annoyed and distressed by the postings I saw.

      I'm done. I want life back before Facebook, and there is no law that says I have to participate - despite almost everyone I know being on there. If my social life suffers (which I don't think it will) so be it. I'll find some people who don't participate in Facebook, I know there are some out there!

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    2. I deleted since Thanksgiving and don't want to let it control me again, that's not going to happen!I'm feeling free and less stressed every passing day,And if anyone wants a real one on one relationship with me they can call, come over, or email,FB isn't a one on one personal relationship with any one that is on there! I don't need to know every single event in everyone's life or every single news story what a overload that is not even healthy for mind body and soul! I don't feel I'm missing anything except all the overload of everything FB has to offer and who needs that!! Real friends will take the time and effort to be one on one the way a relationship should be and was meant to be!!! Yes! I'm free again!!!

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  3. One girl I know posted all day long as to what she was up to. One Christmastime she just had to post a status update about putting money in the Salvation Army kettle.

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    1. Sounds like she was looking for some kind of praise from people for giving to salvation army!Some people on FB seem to like to brag or want attention! Personality comes shining thru on face book!

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    2. It is better to give quietly than to make a spectacle about giving. "That thine alms may be in secret: and thy Father which seeth in secret himself shall reward thee openly" Matthew 6:4.

      Being on Facebook encourages such narcissistic behavior.

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    3. Yup. Facebook is a perfect tool to really find out what a person is all about. I looked this morning and saw people complaining about mild injuries (and looking for sympathy), boasting about trips, expressing their undying love for their significant other and announcing that they found their new perfect job. Well, gosh, good on ya!

      Facebook is flat out embarrassing to witness, in that I'm embarrassed to see middle-aged adults begging for praise and attention. Why are THEY not embarrassed, that is the questions. Maybe it's me. Maybe there is something wrong with me that I don't want to participate in this ridiculousness?

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    4. No there is nothing wrong with you!! Join the sanity club!! More and more are!!! You made so much sense and smart people are catching on!!! Hurrah!!!

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  4. Has anyone on here gone back to FB and gotten disapointed again? Thought it would be different this time? told yourself because of this reason or that reason it will be a better and different experience? Well It happend to me anyone want to share in their experience? Waiting!!

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    1. I have a few times. Every time I go back I find myself sucked back into old dramas, feeling old feelings of resentment and jealousy, and, in short, feeling upset that my time is being wasted logging into the site. I usually reach a critical breaking point and quit again. Every time life improves and I just shake my head, feeling stupid that I thought that things would be different.

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  5. "Liking One Person's Posts and Ignoring Another's", I've had this issue in a school group I was in. I would post links to events my classmates could utilize to expand their skills and business. I received no likes, but in groups you can tell they have seen this link. The next person would post a picture about Scooby doo saying something like "Poop" and it would get 30+ likes and "lol" comments! I felt left out and ignored and deleted myself from the group and facebook. I felt awkward around my classmates the next day too, knowing how they really felt about me. I mean, no likes! I've tagged a friend on there and she never responded but responded to someone else's post. I deleted her too because she was rude. The kicker was that, she was totally nice and different offline but was rude and immature on Facebook. I agree, Facebook is used as a weapon and I don't see any benefit from it.

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    1. Yes. When the "like" button was added it really changed the game. Now people who use Facebook have to be compelled to "like" every single reply to their post so that no one feels left out. The whole thing does reduce a person to junior high level.

      Let's face it, everyone wants to be liked and appreciated, but Facebook basically throws one to the wolves in this sense. You will be "liked" by some and flat out ignored by others. So in trying to part of the group, you will be in effect, reduced to a popularity contest by counting how many "likes" or comments you got. It is VERY clear that people who amass thousands of friends and post constantly, thus getting 100+ likes when they change their profile photo, or post pretty much anything, know *exactly* what they are doing. They are fishing for compliments and they know, with 1000+ "friends", their chances of getting their egos stroked are much, much higher.

      People can, do and will use Facebook as a weapon. The constant Facebook users probably aren't even aware of how destructive their behavior can be to others. These are the ones who document their entire lives on Facebook and are too busy seeking out their own "likes" and comments from their "friends", thus feeling worthy enough to be a human being. And yes, these Facebook zombies spend their entire precious days going through their News Feed and "like" ing all their hundreds of friends photos and posts, so that they'll be accepted and "liked" and so that other will return the favor of "like"ing them back.

      Yeccchhhhh!!!! What in the hell has humanity been reduced to?

      Seriously, who needs this kind of stress. Imagine how hard it must be for teenagers and young adults who are trying to navigate their way through life. Then they have Facebook to make them feel like utter crap. The weaponry used on Facebook has even led to suicide for young people and adults. Isn't this reason enough for Facebook to go away? And it even can make middle-aged adults feel like crap. My goodness, isn't life hard enough as it is without social media rearing it's ugly head?

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    2. As for me I get and am tiered of feeling like I have to like everyone's posts or they will get mad or hurt that I'm not keeping up with all their madness they don't know they are sucked into!!I'ts not fair that these people expect it and I'm tiered of the whole game of fake book where no one seems the same when they are on it!!!

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  6. I've had it happen to me when so called fb friends would ignore my posts or comments all the time but put a "like" on the other comments seems people show their worst faces on "face book" maybe they think they can do whatever they want on there because they are behind a screen!! Whatever the reason is they aren't true friends by any means and don't deserve the time of my day!!! I was raised with better manners but sad to say this is not the same world anymore!!!

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  7. I even have had the wonderful experience of a person, Facebook "friend" I know, who is one of the worst Facebook narcissists I have ever seen, give me the cold shoulder in REAL life because I don't "follow" her on Facebook, watch every move (and I do mean EVERY move) and "Like" every last thing about her. This person documents her entire life on Facebook and expects people to follow and approve, and yes, a LOT of people do this. She does have over a thousand "friends", and many "followers"….I choose to not follow her because heck, I'm kinda busy taking care of sh*t in my own life, ya know?

    Yet, this person, who is apparently enraged that I don't want to "like" every last thing she does from drive her car to work to take and post selfies almost every day, feels the need to let me know she notices my absence from Facebook, or at least, from "like"ing every comment or saying "You're so beautiful" when she post a selfie. Heck, all her really good "friends" LIKE every thing she does! I refuse to participate in this madness.

    Her behavior to me screams sociopath, narcissist or some kind of personality disorder. I am pleasant, friendly and courteous when I see her in - ahem - real life - but she doesn't approve of my desire to concentrate on real, human, in-the-flesh, communication. So freaking weird.

    Basically, for a lot of Facebook narcissists, life only matters if if it announced on Facebook and if you reply on Facebook and "share" your innermost private thoughts with hundreds if not thousands of other people peering in on what should be an intimate conversation between two people, in a lot of situations.

    I really preferred life before Facebook hijacked human communication.

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    1. I've gone back and forth on and off fb every time I go back I feel disappointed as if fb is even important enough to care about the feeling of if I ignore posts and what these so called friends might think of me bothers me a (little) but I really hate fb for so... many reasons!! Can anyone tell me why I give fb chance after chance to be a better experience??? It fails EVERY TIME!! I guess the fb demons so to speak don't want to loose all their sufferers!! It's delete time!!!

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    2. "SuBee"...you really hammered it down with your insight especially regarding the lack of human, face to face interaction. It is absolutely strange in the a day and age in which many or most people regard human conversation as "weird" and "unusual." You can feel more heart, personality, emotion and general connection in just a five minute talk instead of a 35 hour long exchange of impersonal, pale, grammatically incorrect and just plain distant feeling having to use FBook and texting. If anything, if you can't so much as have a telephone conversation with another, these days, something sociopathic and indicative of an individual that cannot or has lost the ability to be remotely human. One of my best friends I grew up...he uses Facebook as some sort of outlet to blast out his life. He works for government too so I find it disturbing he never replies to emails, texts, or phone calls...but posts images and updates about everything he is doing throughout a day.

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  8. thank you for writing this blog, a someone with a lot of mental health issues facebook was just toxic and destructive for me, I have an addictive personality and its been many things, shopping addiction, the gym, dieting etc etc. I would use facebook for rants as I enjoy writing and commenting on issues and religion and politics, also i admit I am very negative and melancholic and would use facebook to rant about how useless, ugly and how crap my life was and if something bad happened such as illness or death i'd spend all day ranting, i have no switch off mechanism and would say too much and countless times it got me into serious fall outs and some very upsetting situations. After years of saying I'd quit and then quitting and "friends" pleading in emails to come back and so I'd re open the profile, I finally thought after one distressing incident too many this is not helping me, other people or my own relationships, I was kidding myself oh i go to play bubble popping and candy crush and look at cat pictures and support a page for a terminally ill child, but i was an addict, even in the early days of coming off it i am trawling the net reading articles to do with facebook which is how I came across this.

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  9. No more posting on my timeline for updating people about stuff that is not their business. No more wasting time scrolling for people which aren't of my life and i don't need to keep in touch. Real friends have my mobile phone number. Time is life, and wasting time on facebook is just plain stupid. Thank you for your blog

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  10. Facebook is a US Gov/CIA soulless entity designed to extract information in order to create electronic dossiers on every single user. Google Zuckerburg and his familial (Granpappy) lineages.
    Three months on it four years ago activated my brain. Get off it - it is so great! Don't be a brainwashed sheeple. Reclaim your life and dignity from the Globalist Scum. Life is so much more than the intellectual ghetto known as "Facebook". Quit slumming. God Bless, live the dream and GO TRUMP 2017!

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