Tuesday, March 24, 2009

I Hate Facebook


I hate Facebook. There. I said it. And it feels damned good. I know it won't make me popular. In fact, I'll probably be cyberflogged over it. I'm sorry, but I just don't get it. Any of it. Oh sure, it's fun once in a blue moon when one of my childhood pals miraculously unearths a 40-year-old photo and "tags" me, but then that fascination quickly turns to horror as I realize my embarrassing pre-pubescent shot is now online for all to see. Couldn't it just simply be scanned and emailed to me the way technogeeks did things back in the olden days, ya know, the late 90's?

Oh, Facebook. You cyberland of rampant narcissism and wasted time. What started out as a social networking site for college kids has somehow turned into a cesspool of self-absorbed way-too-old-to-be-fucking-around-on-Facebook adults who think that the rest of us actually give a shit about what they're drinking, eating, thinking, reading, watching, and/or are listening to every five minutes. They post their top 5 records, movies and TV shows. They post "25 Random Things About Me" lists. And they tell us constantly what they're "fans of." One person is a fan of "grilled cheese." I kid you not. What have we come to when grilled cheese has its own Facebook page? Someone clearly has way too much time on their hands.

I think I've figured out Facebook's major appeal. It offers uber-narcissists an opportunity to have their proverbial 15 minutes every five fucking minutes!. The site is overcrowded with attention-starved grown-ups essentially screaming "look at me...look at me!" all day long. They change their profile photos as often as I change my underwear, and they've somehow convinced themselves that their lives are infinitely interesting all the time. The "audience factor" is just way too attractive to these folks. It's drunken karaoke without the booze and the bad singing, but with all the requisite self-indulgence.

Case in point the "What's on your mind" section, formerly the "status" box. It's full of pretentious, inane ramblings like "Bob is making some soup," "Annie is dry-heaving right now," "Louie is sitting in traffic, pondering the meaning of life," "Joe is hungry," "Debbie is tired," "Maggie is perplexed," "Phil's ass hurts from yoga," "Archie's dreaming of Tulsa," "Seth is a fan of Fellini," "Leslie is drinking her morning OJ," "Dan is contemplating a nap," "Ellen is feeling empowered," "Jack is boarding a flight home from LA," "Susie is feeding her brain!" Oh...my...god. Somebody please get me an ice-pick to jab into my skull.

Let's face it, there's probably two or three of our really best pals who actually do care what the hell we do all the time. That's why they're our BFF's. And they're the ones who will normally respond to the riveting "Ed is drinking some coffee" post with something equally fascinating like "Decaf or regular?" But the rest of your 5000 Facebook friends really don't care about these non-stop musings, as evidenced by the fact that virtually 99% of them have zero replies. I mean honestly, what can you really say back to "Rufus is rubbing a London Broil?"

Now in the spirit of full disclosure, I am a citizen of the Facebook nation. I was lured there by a dear friend with promises of mega-business-networking benefits, and I must also confess to periodically using the site for shameless self-promotion to my vast empire of 165 friends. But if I am indeed a Facebookian, it is citizenship in the vein of Che Guevara, Abbie Hoffman and Thomas Paine. I'm a radical. A dissident. A conscientious objector in the Armed Forces of Facebook. I might even call myself a revolutionary, for I'd love to stage a coup and turn Facebook the vainglorious social-networking site into Facebook the bastion of selflessness and redeeming social value. Just think of how incredibly impactful Facebook could be if its typically self-involved members would harness all of this cyberpassion and energy and channel it instead into educating our children, healing the sick, helping the poor and saving the environment.

I realize that I'll likely lose a few 'friends' over this blasphemous diatribe, most likely those in my Facebook tribe. Some might even de-friend me, a sure sign that I've been branded a social-networking-outcast. But my real friends, the ones I've known for a zillion years, the ones I see all the time, the ones who I actually hang out with outside of cyberspace and have real live actual relationships with, the ones who'll come over at 2am at the drop of hat if I needed help, they'll totally get it. Know why? With the exception of one or two folks whom I absolutely adore and apologize to in advance if I've offended, none of them are on Facebook.

58 comments:

Anonymous said...

I agree. I don't understand the popularity of twitter either.

Anonymous said...

a fade 4shur - why can't they just email me! Who cares what the hell you are doing? But love seeing the photos - too fun.

Tom said...

Youre a dissident and youre an Obama supporter? He's a Wall Street-appointed President who received BIG money from AIG for his campaign. He's more of the same and youre a dissident? Can you tell us how?

Anonymous said...

How is it any different than blogging, my friend? As if the whole world gives a shit about what you think? Come on, what is blogging if not a vanity project? Get off your high horse, Andy, and face facts, you are an "uber narcissist" with waaay too much time on your hands.

Anonymous said...

The fact that you took time to write about this? I agree with 10:57, the lady doth protest too much! Lighten up. Who gives a f...?

Anonymous said...

Bravo! This captures my sentiments about Facebook perfectly. Along with Blackberrys, cellphones, pagers and texting, Facebook further expands the seemingly endless vehicles for narcissism and self-importance. What ever happened to the fine arts of conversation and letter writing?

The Ostroy Report said...

Anon 10:57....
I appreciate the tongue-lashing, and expect it. That said, my writing and opinions appear elsewhere besides my blog (NY Times, Huffington Post, FoxNews, WABC-TV, Air America Radio, etc). Surprising as it is to me, people actually do seem to care what I have to say. And it never ceases to amaze me....
Andy

Anonymous said...

I was thinking pretty much the exact same thing the other day.It's cool seeing what old friends have been up too,but in my world,I'm too damn busy to be messing around with alot of the bull that they have on there."Right now Frank is whacking off". Mostly I like to see where old friends stand with thier Social,Political, and Economic views.

Visible said...

It's all an extrapolation of masturbation which, on the physical level, can only be done so often and for so long and, no matter what anyone has to say contrary to it, is debilitating on just about every level.

With the emergence of these "look at Me!" sites you can engage in jerking off all day long and be sure that about the same amount of people will be watching as when you do it for real in whatever private location that may be but never catching on to that.

For some reason I signed up with Facebook because someone asked me to for reasons I can't remember. However, I never went back there after that and I've never been to any of the others at all.

Well said and don't mind the critics. Like you, some of us actually have visitors and something to say.

Phishy said...

I agree. But, no one is making you go to facebook, no one is making you set the status updates to constant, and no one is making you read peoples pointless comments.

Seriously, I agree 100%, just stop using it, check your mail once a week, don't even update your status.

The time you spent complaining (which, strangely enough, is very close to a rant I posted years ago about Blogs) could have been spent shunning facebook.

Kuba said...

Although this rant contains much truth, you allowed yourself to get to the point where these annoying facets of Facebook users transpired. So, you, by extension, were wasting plenty of precious time in giving this all consideration. Why didn't you just back out sooner/.

Massawyrm said...

By narcissistic do you mean in the way that one might believe that others would like to read their long winded musing on what they think about the media you've chosen to digest - on a page named after them with the simple addition of the word REPORT?

A blogger calling a facebook user a narcissist is like a politician calling a prostitute a whore. Sure, they might look like they have different careers, but they both get into bed with other people for money.

√Čtienne de la Bo√©tie said...

I agree about 90%.. The value of Facebook is that you can keep up with people you do like fairly easily. I also use it to try and wake people up to the New World Order/Old World Order/Anglo-American Establishment and how they have been controlling the media, government, etc. I believe the reason the NWO is bankrupting the economy and destroying the dollar is because the information revolution is breaking their control of perception they have maintained by completely controlling the MainStreamMedia. Image how quick the NWO would fall if the folks on Facebook used the power of the platform to organize against the puppet master vs. engage in mindless drivel. I would encourage everyone that reads this to put it to the test and send all your friends a link to the #1 documentary in the world right now exposing the NWO: The Obama Deception. Here is the link... Go out and do some good with it: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eAaQNACwaLw

Anonymous said...

Well, first of all it's a place for friends to keep in contact, not everyone. And just like TV, if you don't like it, don't turn it on. Have you canceled your Facebook account yet? I don't have a Facebook account, but I see why it's popular.

Shery said...

Gee I really like Myspace. I have had more contact with friends and family in the year since I have had the page then in an entire decade when I didn't. I even have a blog entry why I like myspace:
http://blogs.myspace.com/index.cfm?fuseaction=blog.view&friendId=429376285&blogId=461207964
What I don't get is if it is not your thing, just don't visit. Why complain if others find it useful?

Ameno said...

The human impulse for narcissism isn't going anywhere. The very word comes from an ancient Greek myth (and it was an old and universal concept by then). Any business that profits from human narcissism will succeed. Facebook has capitalized on it better than any business before it ever could. The irony in a blog post making a judgement on narcissism is palpable.

Anonymous said...

Facebook also practices censorship. After all, censorship is becoming America's favorite past-time. The US gov't (and their corporate friends), already place protesters in fenced-in cages, ban books like America Deceived (book) from Wikipedia, Amazon and Facebook, and shut down Ron Paul. Free Speech forever.

The Ostroy Report said...

Ameno (and others)...by all means, criticize me. I'm a big boy. I can take it. Again, I expect it. But I must point out the difference between a writer's published commentary (my Facebook piece is also on Huffington Post today) on one of the world's biggest social phenomenons, and that of the FB musings I wrote about. There's no "irony" here. Disagree with what I wrote, but I am regularly published/quoted writer...and ths is what writers do. They investigate, research and state opinions.
Andy

Anonymous said...

.....facebook seems like another cool tool....for kids....that soul-less, shallow adults use to feel important....my woman of eleven years, who marries me after ten years together and then has an affair and divorces me six months after marrying me....then,..a year after the divorce....I get a fucking invitation from to be one of her "Facebook Friends" ......
really, she wanted me to sign on so I could hear all about her favorite shows, foods, etc...what a lost soul.....

Benjamin Steinke said...

Andy, that article was every bit as time-wasting as the FaceBook wall comments you cited at the beginning. If you do not like Facebook, then get off of it and stop wasting bandwidth telling the world how much you hate Facebook! Geez, if you're going to write crud like this, why don't you write it somewhere like, oh I don't know....your FACEBOOK PAGE!!

Tom said...

NY Times, Huffington Post, FoxNews, WABC-TV, Air America Radio? Call some left wing, call some right wing, but you can call ALL these vehicles CORPORATE CONTROLLED propaganda machines. Andy, the Huffington Post and Air America loves you because your an Obama worshipper who lies and doesnt even follow your own header when you say, "we're not afraid to criticize our own when warranted"---thats a big lie. I can think of many, many things I could say about Obama that would never, ever post that are 100% FACT---thats why the left love you. The right (FOX News) only has you on to make attempts to be "fair and balanced" and that's only during the 5% of the time they choose to do so. Plus, you're only on the Strategy Room, which is ONLY online--big deal.

I'll be more impressed when the Independent press (which care more about the Constitution and liberty) publish your articles. I wouldnt be bragging about being recognized by corporate controlled shills! Your just a political pundit and hack, not a REAL journalist. Complaining about Facebook when you actually have a page on it is about as hypocritial as anything Ive ever heard Bill O' Reilly do or say. It's like complaining how McDonald's sucks while you're woofing down a Big Mac!

Tom said...

I meant to say "I can think of many, many things I could say about Obama that YOU would never, ever post that are 100% FACT

Tom said...

Dont hurt Andy's feeling people, Andy will BAN you or DELETE your comments. We all know he deletes comments even if he just doesnt LIKE what you say.

marxist-socialist said...

Les Visible: hi my friend and others good to see you here !! And indeed !! I think that not only Facebook is a waste of time, but others social sites as well. However we cannot blame the people, but instead the corporate leaders and social engineers of this world. I think that the problem is not Facebook itself, because if Facebook would be used for philosophical, political, science, sports and to spread general knowledge it would be a great tool. But from what ive seen people just waste time there, specially High school and college students which would benefit more from reading a book, or reading their own School and College Text books material than from wasting precious emotional and nervous energies, instead of studying, playing a sport, exercising, playing piano, guitar, etc.

.

The Ostroy Report said...

A simple search through the comments section on any number of posts both current and during/after the election will show that I not only regularly post comments from folks who disagree with me...but I often criticize the Democratic Party, Obama, Hillary, etc. But go ahead, don't let me let facts get in the way of your spin.
Andy

Anonymous said...

I find it both humourous (Canadian) and frightening that some people would come to a blog and make claims about the author essentially being a hypocrite because he blogs, as opposed to facebooks, using his own words such as narcissist, etc.

The thing is, you DID come here to read his blog. You read through the whole thing, and then complained about it. The irony is that you all inadvertently proved his point. No one gives a fiddlers feck about what you say on facebook. Whereas the people that are interested, leaning yea or nay, did come to find out what the author had to say.

The fact that you all took the time to read it, proved that you did want to know what he had to say about the topic.


As a side note, I cancelled my account over a month ago... For the same reasons mentioned in this article.

Tom said...

I read Larry's story and you kept deleting the Rahm Emanuel stuff----no spin there, fact. That must be why FOX News likes you.

Mark Nemeth said...

lol -- Very funny article, thanks! I have re-connected with some old friends on FB so on the whole, I'm thankful, but just barely. I'm still laughing from your article! Spot on, funny, great stuff.

Mark Nemeth said...

Mark is responding to a comment.

PS. One person asked "How is facebook different than blogging?" and the answer seems obvious -- it's not the idea of posting something on the web, it's the content. Is the percentage of mundane Facebook entries the same as the percentage of mundane blogs? Maybe you think so. I don't. Cheers.

Mark Nemeth said...

Oh, one last comment:

I just discovered your blog, I like it and I'm pointing you to mine: http://thefirst100.blogspot.com/

Here's my post on Facebook:
http://thefirst100.blogspot.com/2009/02/are-companies-your-facebook-friends.html

MaLinda Zimmerman said...

That was too funny, but very true. You have a knack for writing friend. Good luck in your expressive work!
~M~

Anonymous said...

haha - captured perfectly including the follow-up clip - loved it.

Christina

Larry M. said...

by the way, Im a different Larry than the other guy. I should hae put Larry M.--sorry

Anonymous said...

Well, glad to know the reason that I'm a "friend" on Facebook is because you are using me to try to further your "career."

Jamilah Kolocotronis said...

I'm one of those adults who has come to Facebookland, but it wasn't an invasion. My 16-year old suggested I join so I could promote my books. He even helped me set up my account.

The status reports, or whatever they're called now, can get ridiculous. But all of my kids are on Facebook, along with one niece, three nephews, and my sisters, so it's a great way to stay in touch. (I also know if my 13-year old is sneaking onto Facebook while he's in school.) Also, since we've moved frequently, I have friends in many different states and it's been great finding an easy way to reconnect with them.

So I do like Facebook, overall. It can get silly, but sometimes I need a diversion.

saraluna said...

I couldn't have said it better, and couldn't agree more. THANK YOU. I want to post this on my facebook page.

Anonymous said...

Can I be your friend on Facebook?

Oh, wait .. then I'd have to actually sign up, navigate through that atrocious layout that gives runs neck and neck with Myspace for sheer ugliness, and .. ah skip it .. too much hassle .. I'm "de-friending" you.

Firestarter5 said...

I was on Facebook as well at one time, but gave up long ago. The game seems to be how many friends you can accumulate and how much shit you can put on your page.

I would have liked to corner one of these people who listed they had 400 friends, and say: Name them.

At least with Blogger I can post tits and ass...who the hell wants to see me?

The Ostroy Report said...

Larry, Larry, Larry.....
Andy "censors free speech?" I mean really, c'mon dude. I know playing the victim is attractive, and blowing things out of proportion helps make your case. But the simple truth is, you're the only one here whose posts get rejected 98% of the time. Maybe it's just you, pal. Did ya ever think of that? Maybe you should take a look at the other 2% of your posts and see why/how they make it through. Might improve your odds....
Andy

Chris Vosburg said...

Hmm.

Anybody wanna try their hand at writing? Well, now you can: have at it, and I guarantee that the internet will provide a planet of readers, both supportive and not, that you would not have reached otherwise. Isn't science wonderful?

Everybody gotta start someplace, Andy, and for every one of the painfully banal clips you provide, there's another that suggests the sound of distant wings beating: a wizard, a true star, clumsily stumbling to his destiny.

Examples? Okay:

Elmer Bernstein: scored "Robot Monster",a painfully low budget sci-fi flick. His work was awful, wonder he ever worked again.

Vilmos Zsigmond: Well, let's not go into too much detail about his career of cinematographer for bad Ray Dennis Steckler movies before discovery by Spielberg.

You see what I'm saying? Let 'em! who knows how many Marquezes and Beethovens are out there-- the tools are now available to everyone, and the only downside is what you've described: the clutter.

That's your humans for ya. I'm willing to endure it for the chance...

The Ostroy Report said...

Ok Larry, you have been reported to Blogger. They are going to monitor your activity on this blog, and if you persist in clogging it repeatedly with angry, off-topic racist, anti-semitic posts, and acting in a harassing manner...despite my repeated requests for you to stop...you are going to lose your blogger membership. They will take you and your own blog down. So, have your fun, pal, but I'll still be here long after you're gone. Take my advice...got something to say...whether you agree with me or not? Join the discussion and stay on topic. respond with civility, and you will not have a problem. Lots of folks post here who disagree with me and they have no problem and their posts are not rejected. Yours are rejected for the reasons I've stated to you countless times. But that's irrelevant now. And please don't post the Terms of Service here to try to convince me or anyone else of your innocence. The only people you have to convince now are the Blogger.com staff, who'll be the ultimate judges of your behavior on this and any other blog from now on. Good luck. Be smart.

Jessica said...

Andy, why areyou against free speech? I looked that Benjamin Emanuel story up like the other guy said and it happens to be true.

The Ostroy Report said...

Jessica, you asked a reasonable question so I will answer you. This is my blog. I write what I want; what's of interest to me. And my readers are invited into the dialogue through the comments section. The comments section is not for people to throw out random topics for me to respond to like you do at an improv club. Nor does it mean I am obligated to respond to this off topic stuff...nor am I obligated to write blogs about subjects people suggest to me. The issue is not whether a story suggestion is true or not. There are lots of stories that, while true perhaps, are not what
is of interest to me, nor do I want my comments section flooded with repeat posts aboput it. This is my blog. What I write about, and what my readers post, is up to me. If someone has a subject that is so important to them, they are free to create their own blogs and do it there. I hope this clears up any confusion.
Andy

The Ostroy Report said...

New rule: We are going to delete all off-topic posts from now on. Sorry Chris, etc. And, while the mysterious disappearance of "Larry," which coincides with the sudden appearance of "Jessica," is quite humorous, it's totally transparant. Larry, let me remind you that the Blogger.com folks track people by the account logins not by the fake names they use to post comments. If you persist with this reported activity you are going to be kicked off Blogger. Don't say I didn't warn ya.

And if all this nonsesnical posting becomes a chore to delete, we will simply return back to comment moderation. Remember, the message board is for you, not me. And if you guys won't use it in the manner in which it's designed for--to engage in civil, on-topic discussion of what I write--then it'll simply be moderated from now on. Jeez, aren't we all adults here? Let's act like it.
Andy

Larry said...

See Andy, on my blog I do have a comment disclaimer--it says I MAY delete a comment if its childish and meant ONLY for purposes of provocation where they are not trying to inquire about anything truthful or engage in any debate. For example: I support Ron Paul--and if a blogger ever came on my blog and said something bad about Ron Paul---deleting the comment makes no sense, because that would only give the person who posted it the upper hand. They would win because in deleting the comment, I am giving credence to their claims by ignoring the comment and being afraid to address it. Even if they completely made something up and said "Ron Paul is a homosexual", I STILL wouldnt delete it because I would expose that their comment was made out of complete ignorance and the fact that theres no way they could ever provide a source, because its not true. But I continually post links and sources about the things I say and you simply delete them. Theres only ONE reason why you delete and one reason only-----because what Im saying isSO true, that you are afraid other bloggers who follow ou will see my post and maybe investigate it----well, except for sheep like Chris who just dismiss the stories as "wingnuttery" but yet provide no sources for my claims not being true. You are afraid that if other bloggers on here see the things Im saying as truth (which it is) then they will wonder why you ignore these stories---hence exposing the fact that you conveniently IGNORE very important stories simply because they incriminate the ones you support.

Tell me where Im wrong. Why cant you just address it ONCE without the INCORRECT accusations that Im being racist and anti-semitic and saying hateful things? If you think theyre so hateful, expose me instead of THREATEN me. All threatening does is show that you have no other weapon in your arsenal to throw at me to shoot down my claims. My God Andy---youre doing EXACTLY what you accuse the right wing of! Oh and by the way, you very frequently call the Bush peple "Busheviks"---how respectful is that??

Anonymous said...

hey Larry why don't you just knock it off already? Your the one we should all feel sorry for because your really pathetic. Im embarrassed for you the way you keep begging Andy to acknowledge you. Hes not going to write about your stupid Ram Emenual shit ok? Your acting like a crazy fucken stalker here. You must be some old dude with no life. You post the same dumb shit over and over again and your humiliating yourself. I really feel sorry for you. Just cut the shit already, no one wants you or here.

Anonymous said...

I agree. Bye Larry. Please leave

Anonymous said...

I agree. Bye Larry. Please leave

Tom L said...

and dont let the door hit yer ass on the way out larry.

Jessica said...

What? Im Larry?? All I did was go to wikipedia and read nfo on the Irgun----and Im another person? Wow---my boyfriend is gonna be shocked, lol.

Anonymous said...

I think Facebook is good because you can communicate with people you actually know (friends, relatives, etc.) and not have to pay an opening bid of $500.

Melissa said...

BTW, that last post was from Melissa in L.A.

IGnatius T Foobar said...

Preach it, brother! You've described beautifully one of the worst aspects of Fecesbook, and why I categorically refuse to join. And your description of narcissistic Fecesbook addicts describes my sister to a tee! 35 years old, unmarried and childless, trying to convince herself that she's still a hip, hot, totally-what's-happening 20something because she's got 500 friends on Fecesbook. Every time she opens her mouth she's trying to get someone to friend her on Fecesbook. Ugh!

I'm looking forward to the decline of Fecesbook. It will happen soon.

Anonymous said...

Andy I LMFAO on this, I now know what to say if anyone brings up FB and why I don't want to use it. You articulated my thoughts, I'll just point people to this URL.

White Beauty said...

I hate facebook...
Nice Nice...

White Beauty said...

"With the exception of one or two folks whom I absolutely adore and apologize to in advance if I've offended, none of them are on Facebook."

I liked this...

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