Why I Broke Up With Facebook

Oct 13, 2017

Two weeks ago, I de-activated my Facebook account, after hearing that Russians may have used it to interfere with our last presidential election.

I know how vulnerable a lot of people are to misinformation these days — so I decided it was creepy to participate in a system that could be dishing out propaganda.

By analogy, in my overactive imagination, I could see a little Rasputin-like troll living in my battered metal mailbox at the end of our dirt road, where it feasted on my mail, handed me lies and leered at me.

But seriously, I really pulled the Facebook plug because it was sucking up great quantities of my time.

Ironically, my last Facebook posting was to let everyone know I’d no longer be able to see their postings of puppies, grandchildren and fabulous food. I would no longer receive their urgent pleas to support causes. I would lose out on travel and dining recommendations.

I’ll no longer use Facebook to promote the professional writing I do.

And if there’s a long-lost relative out there who’s been trying to reach me through Facebook to give me a lot of money — well, I’ll miss that boat, too.

Of course, after buying that Overstock throw rug for my kitchen, I’ll now be deprived of seeing hundreds of other throw rugs I might need, in case I get more kitchens.

I’ll admit it’s a little lonely out here in non-Facebook-land.

It’s amazing how much my friends know about each other these days, via cyberspace, that I’ll need to hear the old-fashioned way - in person, or on the phone. But now I’ve got more time to read actual newspapers, and that’s where I found another bit of consolation about this decision.

Recently, The New York Times reported that federal investigators and officials at Facebook believe that groups of Russians posing as Americans were indeed part of a highly coordinated disinformation campaign to spread fake political news.

And as a former reporter, I really don’t want to be associated with a venue that makes it easy to publish lies.

At the same time, I can completely understand why most people I know are still Facebooking, and I cast absolutely no judgment there.

None.

So if you happen to be one of my old Facebook friends reading this, give me a call some time. I'd love to catch up offline.

Update 10/16/2017: This story originally ran under the headline "Albright: Bye-Bye Facebook."