Yes, I actively dislike Facebook, so much so that I rarely go on it any more.
I have remained a marginal FB user but only because it serves 2 useful purposes in my business.
First, FB is a good forum for telling people who follow me about my news—typically a new book or an upcoming seminar or webinar.
While the rest of the world probably doesn’t give a rat’s ass what I do, a small group of my readers does and FB is a good way to spread the word, as is Twitter, my blog, and this newsletter.
Second, Facebook ads have proven effective for adding new names to the subscriber list of this newsletter. The volume isn’t huge, but the cost per name to acquire new subscribers on FB is quite affordable. As a result, I will do more FB ads in 2015.
Having said that, there’s a bunch of stuff that makes me really dislike Facebook to the point where I think of quitting it altogether (though I can never quite pull that trigger):
1. Food photos.
A surprising number of FB users regularly post photographs of what they are having for breakfast, lunch, or dinner. I have asked several why but can’t seem to get a straight answer. If you do it, why? Do you think I really care that you made a waffle this morning?
2. Religion and politics.
Two things we are taught never to discuss are religion and politics. Yet both are popular topics.
Religious people: I respect your rights to your beliefs, but I do not want them shoved into my face.
Political people: You know your strongly expressed political views will offend those on Facebook with opposite views, so why do it?
If you read me regularly, you know I am anti-bragging, I define bragging as telling someone something great that happened to you or that you did without the person asking first.
The reason I dislike bragging is that it does nothing but puff up the ego of the braggart while often making the recipient of the bragging feel less good about themselves.
For instance, if your son struggled in college, dropped out, and doesn’t know what he wants to do, and mine got straight As, it might make you feel worse about your own situation. So no good comes from bragging, even about our kids, because it’s hurtful to those less fortunate.
4. No proof required.
Anyone can say anything on FB, especially about their business or personal accomplishments, without having to present one iota of proof that it is true.
I contend that social media is contentious in nature: people on FB and LinkedIn Groups love to argue, and these arguments often turn nasty and personal.
It does seem that some on FB almost deliberately misinterpret or misunderstand the simplest and most innocent statements, and respond in a heated fashion. And when you correct them, they get even more vitriolic.
Others are just looking for an argument, and will use the most innocent post or comment as a jumping off point for their rant.
Perhaps some find these FB arguments stimulating, but I dislike them intensely.
For instance, once in a post I noted that it is unacceptable to use the c-word in business writing after someone had done it to me.
To my surprise, this thread generated well over 500 comments, with some shockingly defending the practice. I am still to this day saddened that any adult with an IQ over 80 thinks it is OK to use the c-word in writing.
Bob Bly is the author of “World’s Best Copywriting Secrets” and has written copy for more than 100 companies including IBM, Boardroom, Medical Economics and AT&T. He is the author of more than 75 books and a columnist for Target Marketing, Early To Rise and The Writer. McGraw-Hill calls him “America’s top copywriter”.