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March 09, 2010

I'm Losing Touch with Friends and Family. Thanks, Facebook.

Facebook sucks Facebook changes. Often and nonsensically. It's all about revenue no matter what Mark Zuckerberg says. I didn't mind when Zuckerberg decided that Facebook should be more like Twitter. I loved the "real-time" feel. It really helped me keep current with my writer/blogger friends who are as glued to the keyboard as I am most days. 

I even struck up a friendship, as opposed to just a "being related", with my eldest cousin due to the immediacy of the feed. He and I are about sixteen or so years apart in age. He was nearly grown when I was barely in preschool, so we didn't really know each other before we "friended" each other on Facebook. 

It might seem a little thing, and an odd one to people grounded in the face to face world, but I love being able to connect with people through words on a virtual page. It reminds me of bygone days when I wrote letters and received them. Weren't those days wonderful?

But Zuckerberg, in his quest for IPO status, can't seem to ever leave well enough alone on Facebook. His latest tweaking of the feed has rendered it all but useless for people who use it to keep up with ... anyone or anything. No longer does it keep up in real time, but supplies only the "top news" according to what the technogeeks at Facebook think is relevant to me. As a result, I am left out of the loop with no recourse for redirecting my homepage to the people who are REALLY important to me. I haven't seen a current status update on my cousin, or my two step-daughters since the feed thingy switched over.

Facebook is sucking donkey balls any more, in my opinion.
I joined Facebook in the fall of 2007 as a way to stay in touch/get to know my young adult step-daughters better. Over time I connected with new friends I made in the blogosphere, reconnected with old friends from high school and university and discovered that my relatives are far more kindred than I thought they were when I was growing up.

Then the "re-imagining" began. Tweaks and up-ending of format and feeds and lay-out. But I rolled, 'cuz that's the nature of any Internet beast - especially the social media animals where "faster" and "shinier" rule.

Move to Twitter! That's what I am told. 

But, I have a Twitter account, and frankly, Twitter is not about friends or family. The tweetscape promotes, shouts, cajoles, insults, shames, grandstands and sells - and not necessarily in that order. If you are a lowly Tweet with nothing to promote, no business to network and no connections of note, the other Tweeties ignore you. In which case, I might as well be back in the now useless Facebook sphere where I am equally cut off and alone.

I just want a live feed again, or at least the ability to control who and what is important to me. I don't think that's asking for too much. 

I want to know what my daughters are up to and if my brother-in-law has finally completed his profile. What's going on with my friend in Boston, who has a new baby? How are things in Arizona? Has my cousin, Stephen, been traveling again? Did my nephew's hockey team win last weekend? I used to be on top of this.

Sure, one could argue that I could pick up the phone and call, but try locating - even by cell - your twenty-something kids and see what a next to impossible task that is.

Facebook touted itself as a way to keep in touch and now it thwarts my every attempt to do so.

Yep.  Sucks donkeyballs.

This is an original 50 Something Moms post by Ann Bibby of anniegirl1138.comand Care2.