Tuesday, May 1, 2012
Am I the Only One?
I hate Facebook. Every time I use it something has changed. Every time I find a Facebook feature I love, it disappears. For example:
Messages. For a while messages were identified with large letters. Click on MESSAGE and, as you might expect, you would find not only a link to send messages but a link to open the ones you’ve received. Then the link was moved to the sidebar, and then to somewhere that keeps changing in the timeline.
Pictures and Albums. On my personal page I put up birthday photos and wanted them out right away. Well, Murphy’s Law in action, nothing I did made those photos available even to my close friends and family for over a week.
Friend Requests. Did that function vanish with the entrance of the Timeline? I’ve been looking for it for several weeks and just recently found a function in the right hand sidebar, but it only lets me invite, not receive requests.
Home Page Posts. Why do I seem to get more posts from acquaintances and friends of friends than from my closest friends and members of my family? Not that I don’t appreciate the more distant drop-ins, I just want my closer visitors to show up more often.
Which brings me to Privacy Settings. Say, I want to limit access to family AND close friends. Sadly, I can only click one. And if I want to know WHO is included in each list — well, good luck. I know it’s there because I’ve found it a few times accidentally, but getting back to that place whenever I choose is another thing altogether.
*It not only asks for, it Demands my birthday, including the year. On my author page it Displays my entire date. Not only is it none of Facebook's business to do any more than require members to certify they meet minimum age requirement, there's every reason that they shouldn’t collect this information, the most relevant being that it’s a huge invitation to identity thieves.
Overall though, the biggest reason I hate Facebook is that it makes all the rules. Your choices as a user are to do it their way or do it their way.
This is the place where you might -- and rightly so -- be asking why I don’t just stop whining and drop out.
If social interchange was the only reason I went on Facebook I would do just that . . . but it’s not. Presently I have two pages — a Community Page for Bootcamp for Novelists and an Author Page for Connie Flynn. Soon, I’ll be adding another Author Page for my mystery writing pseudonym. The thing most people don’t know is that these Pages are powered by my personal page, and I can't keep them separate.
The demand for professional people to have a Facebook presence is intense. Traditional publishers expect their authors to build Facebook pages for their brand identity and for their books. Independently and self-published authors depend on a Facebook presence because readers expect it. It’s quite possible that the Facebook presence doesn’t sell books or make anyone famous — it’s a big pool and it’s not easy to rise — but the reason I do it anyway is that I’m afraid not to.
So there you go . . . this rant ends in a pathetic crash confession and a pitiful please for company for my terror. So am I the only one out there who feels tyrannized by the social giant? Have you run into hassles on Facebook? Do you also hate it? Are you staying with it for fear of losing relevance or being forgotten? Let me know, commiserate with me, share your own sad story.
Or maybe you love, love, love Facebook. If so, what do you love the most? Does anything annoy you? Or are you a total no-holds-barred adoring fan? Tell me, I'm interested.
In the meantime I’’m committed to understanding and getting along better with my new best friend (that would be Facebook [sob]). Wish me well.
And have a great May.
. . . werewolves are back, you'll find them in the shadows. SHADOW ON THE MOON & SHADOW OF THE WOLF.