Mum and I had a conversation a few days ago about Facebook. It has been an ongoing thought in my mind for a very long time, which is one of the reasons I’m not so active on Facebook now as opposed to before.
Facebook has evolved quite a lot ever since it was first founded years ago. Its users have also evolved along with it. I surely have.
Facebook 1.0 – Adding friends and updating ‘about me’ details. Competing to see who had more friends on facebook. (guilty)
Facebook 2.0 – Adding some pictures here and there. Only those who had the luxury of camera phones did it at that time. (guilty. Actually, I purpose chose the best camera phone at that time for the sake of taking pictures)
Facebook 3.0 – Adding 100s of pictures of a single event. Its as if anyone who sees those pictures from the other side of the world would feel as if they were right there with me wherever I was. (yea, I did this. In my defence, I was studying india, and my friends and family were in Malaysia and everywhere else who wanted to be updated with my life. I’d always like to think it that way)
Facebook 4.0 – updating profile pictures ever so often, to show that we were up to date with the growing sense of fashion. (This is the one thing that I have never done for the donkey’s years that I’ve had Facebook for)
Facebook 5.0 – then came status msg which kept asking what was on our mind. There were some who took it literally, some who trusted facebook like a loyal dog and told it everything from waking up, to going swimming/shopping/toilet breaks etc. and there were some like me, who used Facebook to share 2 cents of my mind’s worth to those who were public nuisance (as if he would read it on my facebook and miraculously repent) (two hands up! I definitely did this!)
Facebook 6.0 – the number of comments and discussions about some pictures started increasing publically in facebook. (I remember publically discussing about sangria with my friend from Belfast, when it was completely unnecessary)
Facebook 7.0 – this new shiny like button popped up on Facebook, and people were cautiously using it at first. (I am a very cautious person, my uncle very generously explained about that during his speech on my wedding day)
Facebook 8.0 – there was a sudden surge in liking pictures, regardless of whether it was a human’s baby or a monkey’s baby. (I found it amusing that people clicked like for random blurry pictures that didn’t mean anything)
Facebook 9.0 – people started investing in dSLRs to take pictures, and every tom, dick and donkey had a photography page. (I have one, which is dying a natural death)
Facebook 10.0 – Selfies were the in thing! The type of pictures uploaded had a general theme to it; local or overseas holiday picture, expensive gifts, eating out, shopping trips, fashion show offs, proposals, happy lifestyle etc. (Thankfully, I did not fall into this trap)
This is when I started thinking. It was during my low times, when I looked at Facebook as pastime, and it made me feel even worse. How come everyone is so happy? How did he get a dSLR, he cant even carry it!? How does she have such gorgeous hair? How can she go shopping every single day?? The jealousy slowly crept in. And then the realization also caught up slowly.
Come to think of it, who would want to put up pictures of themselves or their children crying and looking all grumpy? Nobody. Who would sad share things about themselves publically? Who would be willing to admit publically that there isn’t anything interesting happening in their lives? Clearly, people only uploaded the good ones and omitted the negative ones. And those who sit on the other side of a computer and look at pictures don’t comprehend this. Which makes it even more obvious that Facebook is a place where people are fake most of the time, because they don’t show all the sides of their faces. Facebook is not a true reflection of one’s life. And there are also two types of Facebook users. The one group who are genuinely caring and concerned towards us and want to be updated with our wellbeing and life and always have us in their thoughts. Then there’s this group of people who do the exact opposite. To be honest, I kind of got annoying with the second type of group.
So that was it, I stopped updating Facebook about myself, and eventually, I stopped acknowledging other people on Facebook too. In fact I don’t even look at Facebook everyday anymore. This made people think that it was either because nothing was happening in my life, or nothing good was happening out of it. But the truth is, there are way too many great things that have been happening in my life and I chose to keep it personal.
Despite Facebook being heavily used only for pictures and ‘likes’ these days, I still think Facebook is useful for keeping in touch with a lot of people. For someone like me who has friends and family all over the world, this is my only way of keeping in touch with them. It’s always a debate when it comes to Facebook. To be active, or not to be active? Sigh.