I Stopped Posting to Facebook for a Year and This Is What Happened

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I think most people have a love-hate relationship with Facebook. We love the social aspect of Facebook, but there are things about Facebook that make us a little crazy.

Last Spring, I decided to leave Facebook and join platforms that favored freedom of speech.

I posted about it several months later in my post Why I Left Facebook for MeWe and Liberty Circle.

It was my intention to never go back to posting to Facebook more out of principle than anything else. There were those who wanted to convince me to stay and encourage those who have remained on Facebook, but frankly, I didn’t see the point when Facebook’s algorithms were suppressing my posts.

During my year of not posting to Facebook, there were a few things that I noted; and I’d like to share them with you in today’s post.

I Stopped Posting to Facebook for a Year and This Is What Happened

1. Smaller Platforms are Largely Niched; one is super glitchy

When I left Facebook, I joined MeWe, Liberty Circle (formerly Gracebook), Parler, Gab, and one or two that are not around any longer.

Right from the start I want to say that I love Liberty Circle, because it is an intimate platform where I have gotten to know like-minded people. It feels more like a community.

The couple that runs Liberty Circle have created a wonderful place and I look forward to staying and engaging more.

MeWe

There are a couple of drawbacks I see on MeWe.

It seems that most of my 278 followers are not active MeWe users. Most of them have never posted to their profile, and I don’t see them engaging with the content there, which leads me to believe that they actually don’t use MeWe.

Another drawback is the fact several active MeWe users in my niche tend to spam the feed….all day long.

I know this is probably me being a bit picky, but it doesn’t make scrolling my feed enjoyable or a positive experience.

Overall, I don’t find MeWe to be much of a community experience, but rather a place to dump links. That’s not what I’m looking for.

Parler

Parler was a negative experience for me, and I no longer even have an account with them.

I don’t want to get into the political drama surrounding them being shut down by Amazon’s servers, but where Parler lost me was in the way that it was mostly like Twitter.

To be fair, I knew it was a Twitter alternative when I joined.

And I don’t like Twitter. At all. Not only is it known for being incredibly toxic, but I don’t like the way it is set up.

I guess by joining Parler I had hoped that maybe I’d like the overall feel of it better on another platform. (???)

Dumb, I know. And no, I didn’t.

Gab

First of all, Gab is a very niched platform. Those who have followed me for a while know that my values, and politics, are conservative – so joining Gab in that sense wasn’t an issue for me. But I don’t write about politics, and am not in a phase of life where I want to be bombarded with politics 24/7.

Which is largely what Gab is.

But even that wasn’t what drove me off of Gab. For me, it was the constant glitching on their platform.

Often I can’t get the site to open and refreshing does nothing to help. Then there’s the fact that I paid to upgrade to use Gab TV, but for whatever reason I can’t get most of my videos to upload; and their Help Desk is not responsive.

So, Gab was a very poor user experience for me from day 1, and it didn’t improve with time.

2. I Began to Use Social Media Differently

I am probably not alone when I say that looking at my Facebook Memories is sometimes nostalgic but mostly embarrassing.

Most of my Facebook memories are cringey at best.

Walking away from Facebook for a year actually gave me something to talk about with my in-real-life friends. Because they hadn’t already read about it on Facebook.

I actually had something to say that hadn’t already been put into a post.

My private life became private again – and I found that I really loved my privacy. I stopped feeling the need to share every detail of my life online.

It was refreshing.

But that wasn’t all.

Long before my decision to stop posting to Facebook, I had stopped getting consistent website traffic from Facebook because of their algorithm changes.

I wasn’t very hopeful that posting to alternate platforms would change that in any way – but I had hoped to get in on the ground floor of building a strong presence.

That didn’t happen.

But what did happen was that I learned to develop skills to improve website traffic from other sources.

This freed me from looking to social media for website traffic, which actually freed me to offer encouragement in these places without expectation.

Which actually prepared me for the third thing that happened.

3. I Began to Look at Facebook Differently

Notice that throughout this post I refer to my absence from Facebook as “not posting to Facebook”, and that is on purpose.

While I wasn’t actively posting to Facebook (though I did post a handful of times), I was still using Facebook.

I mostly helped run my clients pages, but I also followed my American home church – Living Faith Church – online. I watch their sermons each Sunday and tune in to their daily prayer called “7:14 Prayer”, titled after 2 Chronicles 7:14.

And this began to slowly cause me to rethink my motivation for leaving Facebook.

You see, when I left Facebook I was angry. And rightfully so. I do think that my anger was far more righteous anger – as it centered around Facebook’s unjust act of purposely suppressing posts.

Not just political posts, but faith-based posts.

Whistleblowers and ex-employees of Facebook routinely share how uncomfortable this made them feel because they knew that Facebook’s behind-the-scenes practices are wrong and are a massive overreach of power.

This can be said for all three giants of Big Tech: Facebook, Google, and Twitter.

Together they have become a world power unlike ever before seen in world history – and I struggled with my use of their platforms because my dependence on them felt like support -and I didn’t want to support that agenda.

But each day, as I tuned in to Living Faith Church’s live broadcasts, my perspective began to change.

I stopped looking at my use of Facebook as support in their unjust (and probably illegal) activities, and began to realize an opportunity I was missing.

If you go back to some of my old videos, recorded on Periscope, I talked a lot about using social media to spread the gospel.

Somewhere along the way, I lost that vision and social media became mostly about helping to get my website content out there for people to see.

So naturally, when Facebook began suppressing my content, that frustrated me and I stopped seeing the point in using anymore.

But each day, as I watched the prayer requests pour in on the comment section of Living Faith Church’s live broadcasts, I remembered that purpose I’d had long ago, and realized how skewed my vision for social media had become.

Being on alternate platforms for a year, knowing that posting wouldn’t boost my website traffic, but would still be an encouragement to those who see it, helped to restore that vision I’d once had.

I am now posting on Facebook again

I honestly had no plans to ever begin posting to Facebook again.

But two weeks ago, as I sat in my chair waiting on God, I felt Him leading me to start posting again for the very purpose of reaching those I can’t reach on the alternate platforms.

I have hundreds of friends on my personal profile not using the alternate platforms I’m on — and I can’t encourage them if they’re not there!

That is a huge opportunity missed by me.

Do I agree with Facebook’s practices? Absolutely not. I think they are deplorable, and I do hope that something can be done to reign all of Big Tech in and put them back in their rightful place.

However, if I let my opinions about their practices stop me from reaching out to people, then I miss out on a great opportunity and put a lid on how much God can use me.

I don’t want to do that!

All in all, walking away from Facebook for a year humbled me and utterly changed my perspective and motivation for using social media in general.

I will stay on MeWe and Liberty Circle….and am once again posting to Facebook and Instagram (A Little R & R / Homeschooling). Here is where you can follow me personally and follow my page.

I look forward to seeing you on whichever platform you choose to use!

Rosilind
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