The antisocial network.


I resisted creating a facebook account for years, sick of hearing facebook this and facebook that…and having people ask me “How come you’re not on facebook?”. It was like some sort of cult….some mass following, and I usually resist these things just because “everyone is doing it!”

It was only when our second eldest daughter traveled overseas that my husband and I finally set our accounts up so we could keep in contact.
I’m having thoughts now of deleting my account and becoming one of the facebookless few.

Why? Because it’s a farce. There is nothing of substance on facebook that interests me.
I know, I’m insulting friends and family by saying that but really for the most part what people (Including myself) post are very shallow, not very informative and not very interesting.
Facebook seems to be one long list of cute/silly/mildly amusing captioned pictures.
It’s very rare that someone will actually post something of substance, something enlightening, or revealing about their actual LIFE and personality.
Of course, people probably don’t because they are well aware of the fact that they are putting it out there for the masses to see, and because so many people seem to think that facebook is some kind of popularity contest, so they add every random person that they have ever had even the briefest contact with, in order to make their friends list positively bulge….Well, it backfires doesn’t it, because then you are cautious about WHAT you post.
And besides….can you really trust facebook’s privacy controls? Really?

What’s more, facebook is geared up for non readers by only allowing you to post a very tiny chunk of text before it decides this is taking up too much space and says “read more”.
Oh I understand the premise of it.
Ramblers like me could very well take over peoples walls, just like that vine I discovered in my garden the other day, but the thing is, these days people are fearful of the “read more” thing.
It’s just how life is.

I had one “friend” respond to a couple of my “read mores” by saying “God, post a novel why don’t you!”
I actually found this amusing, and deleted him from my friends list. If you have the concentration span of a gnat and it hurts your head to read another three sentences, then you shouldn’t be on my list.

We’re becoming incapable of reading more than a two sentences at a time, if that, because our brains are becoming trained to only absorb tiny bits of information because we are so used to it what with text messages and twitter and….well, facebook.

It’s like music.
Throughout the years we have become trained to expect that a song will last approximately three and a half minutes…..when we come across the RARE, six minute epic, our brains switch off because of this radio airplay conditioning.
It’s the same with movie lengths….They figure it all out, and they cater to our attention spans.

Or maybe as a society we are just becoming more and more shallow?
I often wonder about this.
Are we humans evolving in this technological world to become a shallower, more self absorbed version of beings?

Certainly, as I have mentioned before, with mobile phones and all these other technological gadgets that most people are constantly busy with, simple things like having random face to face conversations with strangers in public places are becoming a thing of the past.

People just LOOK so self absorbed these days. Insular. Wrapped in their tight little bubbles of texting and playing with whatever “I” thing they happen to have in their hands.
It makes me really sad to see this disconnect happening….growing….

The other day I watched a documentary about social networks, bullies and trolls.
Talk about an eye opener.
Not (sadly) the bullying that goes on. A modern day technological tragedy in itself, but this documentary opened my eyes to a much more sick and sinister aspect of this pandora’s box we’ve opened called the “internet”.

There are people, it seems, who deliberately scour facebook for RIP sites, with the sole purpose of leaving the most disgusting, vile, incomprehensibly cruel comments for the bereaved family members and friends of the deceased to read.
Some of the things mentioned, for example, was the story of one teenager who hanged himself after being bullied on facebook, and these trolls defaced his image by putting a noose around his neck and posting incredibly offensive comments about his suicide and posted it to the RIP page.
Another was of a boy, on a school excursion, killed by a polar bear….Somebody had posted a picture of a Polar bear with a mangled corpse (I’m not even sure if it was human) with a caption of the boys name and “Nom om om” below.

This new breed of perverted and depraved “people” that technology is giving a voice to makes me feel sick to the core.
What’s more I think facebook itself should be held accountable for at least part of this situation. It seems they are confused as to what images should be deemed as “offensive”.
Freedom of speech, and all that…….bullshit!
And it IS bullshit, when you consider that images of breastfeeding mothers can be deleted (From facebook…I’m SURE this has happened there) because they are “offensive.”

Frankly…I wouldn’t be putting RIP pages on FACEBOOK, to begin with, but there you go, we’ve dug this hole for ourselves. This trap of thinking it’s a “social” network.
It’s not.

After watching this disturbing documentary I wondered to myself….
Is compassion something we are born with, part of our human makeup? Or is it something we are taught, from our parents?
As my husband said, I agree that it IS something that is part of being a human being, but it is nourished, perhaps to a large degree, by parental nurturing.
And this is where I feel part of the problem lies.

I think parental nurturing and the nourishment of all these good societal values and morals, has quite frankly, gone down the drain.

Oh, I could rant for hours on this subject….A number of factors, I believe.
Not just parents are to blame though….but society itself.
The defining lines of decency and “for the good of the community as a whole” aspect have changed.
We’ve allowed them to change.
So perhaps we’re all to blame.
Anyway, that’s a rant for another time.

Right now though, I am seriously questioning all of these so call social networking sites and wondering about the true value of them, in MY life.

About Tracy Lundgren

I am a people watcher,life observer, nature lover, spiritual seeker loving this crazy wild ride that life is taking me on. I am still a blank piece of paper waiting to be filled and that is good.
This entry was posted in culture, health and well being, Life, Parenting, Parents, Social networks, society and tagged , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

8 Responses to The antisocial network.

  1. Dan says:

    There you go again, looking at the half-empty glass. 😦

    I hear ya, but a few thoughts before you you take any action.

    First, don’t delete your Facebook account because you don’t want some perverts (yes they’re out there) to open a new account claiming to be you and putting all sorts of un-truths out there in your name, do you?

    Secondly, in non-defense of Facebook, i always close my browser after logging out of it. Besides the perverts, Facebook and any other business that has a Facebook page is also tracking you on the Internet.

    Thirdly, I use the Firefox browser because it has Tools to “Start Private Browsing” and “Clear Recent History” incorporated in it. Perhaps Microsoft’s Internet Explorer has the same, but I would rather use an Open Source browser than put my security in the hands of a single corporation.

    Now getting back to this online stuff from your comments, in a general sort of way, if I’m understanding your concerns correctly.
    The Internet, Facebook, WordPress, songwriting websites, or any websites for that matter where humans, at least so far, congregate are creations of human beings. They are like any other human creation since the beginning of mankind. Both good and evil are being created within their confines.
    You may be asking what are my definitions of good and evil. Anything that raises ones level of consciousness is good. If it doesn’t do that, let’s just say it’s probably not good.

    I see the Internet in allowing people to become more ubiquitous. Before the dawn of the Internet, would I have every thought that I would be able to converse with someone completely on the other side of the planet? (don’t say it, I know what you’re thinking.)

    But with this ability to communicate with the rest of mankind, comes a responsibility as well.
    We don’t seem to be wanting to follow the Golden Rule in treating another as you would have them treat you. I’m not sure that the word “responsible” is even part of the vocabulary anymore. We’re always wanting to blame someone else for our problems.

    I became depressed the other day when I heard a statement that 48% of the children born in America are born out of wedlock. Can you imagine where those kids are going to learn to be responsible?

    I agree that people, especially the younger generation, are way too far into technology without any balance of spirituality in their lives. But technology, in itself, is not the culprit. We choose to use technology so in a sense, yes, we are to blame, me, you. What would you do if you were suddenly left without your keyboards and other recording equipment?

    WE have allowed the culture to become what IT IS. Likewise, WE are the only ones who can change it for the better. I respectfully don’t think that coping out is the answer.
    You remember when you were young and your parents told you NOT to do something? What did you do? Why naturally you did it.

    May I also respectfully suggest that you continue writing your music because you know that it is a way that you can make the world a better place.
    And don’t just do it for yourself. Do it for your children who are going to inherit this beautiful world that you have written and sung about so beneficially before.
    To be transparent in this post, I am selfishly wanting to hear more music from you.

  2. desertrose7 says:

    There is nothing stopping anyone now, from taking anyones name or picture and creating a duplicate facebook page wth your identity. In fact, that’s what these trolls DO…especially if people piss them off. And if they do, you have no easy way to stop them, and could, even become a target for investigation yourself.
    As soon as you put yourself anywhere on the internet you are fair game.
    I’m quite aware of the other side. The positive side.
    Sometimes though I think we like to bury our heads in the sand when it comes to the internet.
    We know there is no policing it. We all know that it is bringing out new kinds of criminal behaviours, perhaps even things that would never have seen the light of day, had it NOT been for the internet.
    At the very least, it is giving the sickest, most deranged a “voice” and a stage in which to flaunt their depraved true natures.
    But we’re in denial, because for “most” people , if it doesn’t affect THEM, then it’s not a problem.

    I am in two minds about it all.
    I think technology IS changing the way we interact. Sometimes it’s a good thing, sometimes it’s not.
    Time will tell, exactly what we have unearthed here.

  3. I tend to agree with you here Tracy, when it first arrived I was up for it, I have linked to a couple of poetry sites, I rarely post pictures, sometimes I share. I have email – that is my way of connecting with the world…why the need for other medias? Unfortunately and I may offend your followers… it’s the ‘youngens’ that get more of a kick using it. “Look at me, look at me”, no matter if I am being completely perverted or lack long as I get attention. In saying that I agree with Dan to an extent…where the hell would I be without a computer or internet… it’s how we use it and how we influence for good or evil that is the problem. xx

    • desertrose7 says:

      That’s the thing, now that I’m on facebook, friends that USED to email me all the time now simply presume either I’ll be checking out “what they’re up to” on facebook, or else they’ll presume to know what’s happening with me by seeing the odd few things *I* post on facebook.

  4. Mrs D says:

    Great post. I got Facebook initially to catch up with an old work friend – now I wish I’d never bothered. I’m finding it difficult however to extricate myself out of some groups of friends so I just steer clear of it mostly. The worst are those status updates that want everyone to feel sorry for them.

    • desertrose7 says:

      Yes, and….the endless photo’s of FOOD. What they ate for breakfast, lunch, dinner…arrrgggh!

      • Dan says:

        That’s right. You don’t like to cook do you? 😦
        Look at it this way, at least they’re not talking about FOOD coming out the other end. 😯 😛
        You know what you need to do? 😉

  5. This is well written. I’ve resisted Facebook for all the reasons that you have written. I’ve considered caving in. Have not made my decision pro yet. Many WP bloggers put themselvs on Facebook. I’m not really into gaining in popularity yet a couple of people that I email with have encouraged me to use Facebook. It actually has some positives and perhaps the negatives out weigh the positives. I haven’t the answer.

    I do not get notifications of your posts and I am sorry to say that I forget you and then suddenly remember to “go look you up.” You might get an email from me soon.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s