Why I left Facebook

Yesterday I deactivated my Facebook account….it is gone. The question is: Why?

Firstly, I didn’t do it because I had no friends…. I actually culled about 250 of them half a year ago, and still felt I had too many ‘friends’.

Secondly, I didn’t do it because I think Facebook is evil…. I think it is neutral in terms of morality in and of itself.

Thirdly, I didn’t do it because I’d done something stupid… I felt I was using it quite well.

So….why?

I guess there are a few reasons:

  • It was a waste of time. That is, it didn’t really deepen any friendships in a gospel way. I saw more funny pictures, knew who was annoyed, depressed and angry…but it didn’t help me love anyone any better. It gave the pretence of community and love – but it had none. In effect it was just a game, and I think games are a waste of time that I cannot legitimise as a Christian.
  • I saw Christians doing stupid, sinful things. I witnessed Christians lying, swearing, putting photo’s up of them transgressing, flirting, etc. I would just get so upset at the degree of ‘Christians’ sin, that it just got me angry. I would say that Facebook does far more to harm the gospel than it does to help (I am not saying that it cannot be used for good, just that I haven’t seen it used for good very often).
  • People put comments on my wall/ pictures that were outrageous. I had to close my wall down a year ago, and since then have had to ‘police’ my comments. It wasn’t just non Christians writing ‘fruity’ language, it was ‘Christians’ making innuendo’s, etc. On a number of occasions I had to talk to someone to take something down…. it was a depressing comment on peoples faith.
  • I know of marriages wrecked on Facebook. Affairs have started on Facebook. Whilst I don’t think Facebook is to blame, I don’t think it helps. I’d rather run from sin and kill it off.
  • I saw kids putting stuff up they’ll regret in years to come. Some young people I know put photo’s up that were nearly pornographic and made sexual comments. One day they will regret it. I didn’t want to be a part of that kind of environment.
  • People made assumptions about my ‘time’. Sometimes I put something up in the daytime…it may have been a link to a Kindle quote or picture. People then assumed that I wasn’t working. I guess it is a fair assumption from someone who works in an office 9-5. However, I may have been working a 16 hour day, and wrote it in my 20 minute lunch break. However, we must be careful of appearances of evil….so it’s best not to be there.
In a nut shell, I don’t think Facebook is evil, but I only saw 1 Christian use Facebook wisely. I don’t want to stand up and say everyone should leave, but I don’t want to be on there and imply that it’s ok for Christians to be there, and I really don’t want to make Christians feel that they must be there.
I’m off Facebook.
What will you do?
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12 thoughts on “Why I left Facebook

  1. At last . . . someone who’s clearly articulated what I felt in my gut, and why I left Facebook . . .

    One thing though . . . your claims that playing games is incompatible with Christianity . . . could you clarify this? – it’s quite an extreme comment! (or did you mean “games” as in “messing around, flirting, manipulating, etc”?

  2. Steff, you’ll get me into trouble. But well spotted.
    I really don’t mind men playing computer games for 10 minutes or with other men once in a while. But I do have a problem with people:
    -Playing violent games. The sermon on the mount is written about that very kind of thing.
    -Playing games when their family are in the room. They are just abdicating responsibility, hating their wives, and giving a horrendous example to their children. I know of too many wives who can’t believe that their husbands come home and ignore them, but don’t feel they are able to tell them.
    -Playing games for 30 mins to an hour a day but say they don’t have time to read and pray. I have genuine reservations about their salvation.
    -Spend £30+ on games but don’t tithe, help the poor or practice hospitality.
    Anyway, I’m sure I’ll get slammed for this!

  3. This was interesting. I really agree with point 1. Though at the same time, without fb I would probably never have known that you’d become a Daddy.

    Regarding affairs – good point, I had someone from our uni days making comments to me which were not appropriate given his job & marital status. I had to go permanently ‘offline’ in chat to avoid him.

    I look forward to you staying in touch with me in the real world (via e-mail)

  4. If you want to have a life in the world of 2012 then you kind of have to be on Facebook … there’s just a sense of fatigue of how much time it takes up.

    yourpcmate.com

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