Monday was the first day of my pledge not to react to Facebook taunts. I publicly promised to read the thing as usual for a month but not edit what I see.
It was, perhaps, a rash decision – coming as it did just on the month that contains Dominion Day, Independence Day, and Bastille Day. All occasions that may draw forth the bray of the Great Australian Ass on social media. I am now bound to hear it but ignore it…
Fortunately I can still write my own thoughts in my own columns, and hope that someone in the great somewhere reads every word. But even here I am bound by the laws of gentlemanly behaviour not to attack people with scurrilous rumour and unsubstantiated slander. I am not allowed to mock the afflicted. It’s most disheartening.
However, good will come of it. At the same time that I am reading, marking, and inwardly writhing at the stupidity and bias of Facebook posters, I am going to be making a daily note of the way the site works. I’ll make a list of the postings that I see based upon:
a. Normal cheerful posts. ie kittens, babies, dance shows, hot rod cars, etc. Things that make me happy.
b. Cries for attention done in a genuine manner or similar cries done by copying and posting some senseless thing plucked of a North American website.
d.Noxious political propaganda – whether it be a shared rant or an original piece of bad humour or bad taste. Things that make me feel bad.
e. Advertisements. These also make me feel bad, but not in a personal sense – they are just an intrusion.
f. Messages. This section is generally of quite some use to me -a secondary link to people that can get a faster response than an email or postal contact.
In addition, I shall log the number of minutes each day spent on Facebook.
At the end of the month I’ll have a good idea whether I’m personally getting more happiness or more sadness from the social network. It is not a judgement on the people involved per se, but rather an analysis of what it has actually become for me.
Then the second part of the experiment in August…