I’ve had a presence on Facebook for 11 years. When my homeschooled daughter was 16, she took me by the hand and said, “Mom, I think it’s time you opened a Facebook account. I'll show you how.”
I've found it useful and satisfying, as it has helped me stay connected with the extended family and friends we'd left behind when we emigrated. I’ve aimed at keeping my Facebook posts informative about my life, as a forum for sharing my personal experiences. It was similar to sending notes and updates on my life, though Facebook enabled me to reach a much wider network than letter writing could. The convenience of finding a platform through which I could “participate” in far-away loved ones’ lives has been a lifeline while forging a new life in a foreign country.
Lately, though, with the increased violence and polarization in our society, I’ve become disillusioned that Facebook has not had the guts to make a stand, and shut down hate speech and misinformation. I realize that one person’s withdrawal is not going to effect change in Facebook's policies and stance, but I no longer want to live with the feeling that I am indirectly supporting this social engine because it's convenient. It bothers me to continue using it without compunction. My conscience is troubling me.
It's alienating in many ways, to lose contact with people when we all take Facebook for granted as the de facto communication tool. It will be a sacrifice, but it has also prompted a spurt in creative energy for me. Hence, my blog!
And yes, I know how to unfollow and unfriend people on Facebook. That is not the point. For me, this is about the bigger issue of not-supporting a company that refuses to take a stand against hate.