1.9k

FU A/S/L: I'm starting to care a little bit less about labels

It's something unique to computer-goers of the Internet era: It's important, we reasoned, when you're taking to a stranger on the Internet that they know some important things about you in a succinct manner. A/S/L — age, sex, location. What religion we are. What our political leanings are. Our sexual orientation or gender presentation. Our favorite quotations or song lyrics. Things about us that are symbolic of our personalities, our likes and dislikes; our whole self. It's a form of branding, and for years we were proud of it. It happened while I was on Facebook: I noticed that I was the only one going through a labeling crisis.

6.8k

My accidental social media experiment: How Facebook changed the way we define friendships

I have had a love/hate relationship with Facebook since the get-go. Yet, most of my online family, as well as former co-workers, classmates, and even long lost friends and family now connect there. Then the holidays came this year. A time of numerous social gatherings with friends and family you don't see nearly enough. And a little phrase kept sticking in my brain. The first time I kind of just laughed it off. "Oh yeah, I saw that on Facebook." Could I be divulging too much on social media?

So I decided to try my accidental experiment. I deactivated my Facebook account.

2.1k

How to feel safe participating in online communities

Active participating in online communities certainly isn't for everyone, and it's definitely important to take care of yourself and do what's comfortable for you. But I'm going to share my lil' story, since I noticed a lot of "Long Time Reader, First Time Commenter" comments on that post about the reader survey. This may not be helpful for anybody, but I thought I'd put it out there in case somebody needed to hear it.

2.2k

Social Media Diet: Two years later, it's still hard

Ok, it's been two years since I committed Facebook social suicide, and a year since I bailed on Instagram. There was a while there where it was getting easier and easier to socially ignore Facebook. Yes, I have to be there for work, but I just didn't miss it, socially.

Over the past few months though, I've started missing it. Part of it is realizing that even my husband uses Facebook constantly. My staff, my friends, my readers, my own spouse: all use Facebook all day, every day. My friends in LA? Facebook. My friends in Seattle? Facebook. My friends from Seattle who move away? Facebook.

3.0k

Social Media Diet: Recognizing Instagram as a rat lever

I committed Facebook social suicide last year, and now I've decided to officially make the switch from Instagram back to Flickr. I have very strong feels about Flickr, and have a sense of needing to give it one last chance. And if I'm going to abandon it, it's NOT going to be for Instagram. I'm also embarrassed at how shitty my photography has gotten over the six months I've been using Instagram. I'm also trying to recognize and remove the "rat levers" in my digital life…