June 24, 2011

Why I don't Like FaceBook (Anyway!)

Well I have been getting numerous requests for joining Facebook for months now. I had to make a filter in my inbox to keep all requests away (but I still get one or 2 a month anyway). No, I am not a celebrity whom people would be delighted to see. It's just that a lot of my friends are on the "The" Social Network and they want to see me there too. And that's pretty understandable because I want to see more and more people in my own little network, interacting, participating and sharing stuffs. So what's the big deal in joining (or not joining) FB? Well, this post is a PR blog that explains the same:

1. I already use a social network: Orkut anyone?! I joined Orkut in 2007 and have used it a lot circa 2007-2009. In fact, I even coerced a few people to join me there. A lot of people (we Indians at least) were a fan of Orkut at that time, so it was a lot of fun interacting with long lost friends (especially since social networking was a new thing). But over the years, people moved on to Facebook (and for right reasons I think) but I was stuck using Orkut (though I did delete my previous account and made a new one, removing clutter (read 'unwanted friends')). Most people I believe still have an Orkut account. If you really want to join me on a social network, come Orkut! I check my Orkut account at least once a week.

2. Too many friends: People like to have friends and this is what online networking is all about. But it may come as a surprise that I don't like to have too many friends. I just want to have a close set of friends with whom I am comfortable interacting and discussing anything under the sun, and can do so on a daily basis. I made a lot of 'friends' over Orkut (big mistake!) and when they don't interact, don't reply back; they just become a hassle, a kind of formality that you have to complete by exchanging greetings every Holi/Diwali/Eid/Christmas/New Year. I don't want to come on Facebook and face the same old situation again.

3. No Time: It's not that I am not active online. In fact, I may be more active than a lot of people. I check (and reply!) emails, chat on IM, read RSS feeds, maunder on Twitter (too much!), share stuffs on Buzz on a daily basis. Sometimes I ask questions on IRC/forums, now even watch YouTube videos here and there (what about blogging?). I don't want to join another network if I can't give anytime to it. What's the use of making an account and forgetting to visit it for months?

4. Do I need another network?: And this is the most important thing. I still believe meeting one-to-one is the best form of buddying, followed by probably making calls/sms. And everybody will agree that I reply to their mails as soon as I can. Or you can use tons of mediums I noted down above to interact with me. The simple fact is that I can easily contact anyone whom I want to interact right now. So why use FB? You may remember when I wrote "Why I don't have a Mobile". It's all about requirements. When you can do without it, what's the need?

5. I am a bit skeptical of it: I don't know, but I don't get a very positive vibe when hear about Facebook. It's a lot like when other people think about Google and it's products. I have heard a lot of negative things about it (though I have to admit, every good thing has its shortcomings) and their privacy loopholes. I feel like it is a big monster waiting out there to engulf me. May be it has something to do with Big Company Syndrome.

Now I know it is a bit lame to expect everyone to leave their favorite network just to interact with me (after all I don't do the same!). And I also know that I miss a lot of good things by not being on Facebook. So I do believe, I will join Facebook someday. May be tomorrow, may next week, this year or a few years down the line. I just don't know exactly when.

And I would also like to make it clear that the reason I don't have an FB account is  NOT because I don't know how to make one! To tell the truth, I do have a Facebook account! In fact, I have made 1 or 2 accounts few years back, when I was trying everything (including MySpace!). I made the account, checked its interface, found it a bit difficult to use, found no friends, stopped using it. And now either I don't remember the password, or have deactivated the account.

But I would really like to hear arguments in favor of Facebook (other than what I have already mentioned). Please motivate me to make an account!