Facebook Dropout

Facebook has become so popular in American culture that the term is now used as a noun AND a verb.

I confess: I’m a Facebook dropout. I closed my account a few weeks ago, when the energy it took to manage it became overwhelming. Sure, I could have limited my Facebook time; but it seemed seemed important (and addictive?) to to receive my friends’ frequent status/photo/profile updates.

I don’t miss the online social network, save for keeping in touch with a few cherished friends I haven’t seen since high school. Now, I contact them via email, telephone/cell phone, and there’s always the ancient sentimental virtue of letter writing! (Gaze at Fragonard’s portrait of a glowing young girl with a love letter, and it will inspire you to rediscover the lost practice)

For now, I’ll continue my Facebook-free journey along with several friends who have also become recent dropouts … support group, anyone?

NB: Dean of Duke Divinity School L. Gregory Jones wrote an insightful piece on Facebook friends for The Christian Century.

Photo: The Love Letter, by Fragonard, c. 1770, oil on canvas. The Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York, USA.
Photo credit: http://www.abcgallery.com/

© 2009 J. Dana Trent

2 thoughts on “Facebook Dropout”

  • well done, Rev. In my own defense, as a facebook user, I ALSO write real old fashioned letters to my non-facebook-using friends. ;o) Really though, facebook gives me the creeps sometimes.

  • Totally understand this need. Sometimes there is just too much social back and forth coming at you online and you just have to retake hold of the reigns and shut some things out–sorry friends. I remember a few years ago, I had to get off a running listserve because I was injured and it depressed me to hear everyone's happy news. Callous on my part probably, but I just couldn't take it. Later I was able to rejoin, but with some new filters. But to opt out for a little while, reminds us that Fb is not in charge–and it's not.
    Peace, George

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