Thinking of deleting your Facebook account?

By May.24, 2010

Just as I was about to leave home, I checked my twitter stream one more time, and there it was – a link to the video below about deleting your facebook permanently (the steps you have to go through can be accessed here).

But is this something we really want to do, or do we rather want to alert facebook, and the world, to the issues of online privacy? All of this is debatable, and right now I don’t have an exact answer.  I have decided to keep my facebook account for a little longer, but to be honest my activity there is very scarce, if you consider that most of my content is fed through twitter. I can’t say the same about the discussions such 140 character sound bites have generated, and that is what I don’t want to lose. Like danah boyd pointed out, I feel stuck and I don’t like it!   So I am waiting, more anxiously than patiently, for new developments on the facebook ‘soap opera’!

Most of my digital footprint is related with my socio-professional life, so all of this might upset me less than other people. Still, I do not appreciate it at all, and would like to see facebook withdraw in their decisions and actions. Failing that, I think many of us might really consider to move. Be that as it may, this event raises issues we can no longer avoid and provides us with one more opportunity (almost a necessity!) to discuss and reflect about our Digital Identity! And for that I could almost thank you facebook, was I not so annoyed by all this!

Meanwhile Frances Bell also started a meme about facebook privacy. Have a look at it here.

This video raises another very important issue: Digital Identity. (… I might have to do some more written thinking about it…soon!)

This is something we have been discussing in the Social Media sessions I have been offering both here in Salford and at the University of Manchester, but I think there is still space for more discussion about the issues surrounding one’s digital footprint.

Any comments or questions you have regarding this issue, express them here. If you are interested we can also host more of such debates. Just let us know too.

Meanwhile, Pascal Venier and I are working on a session on how to twitter, another social network site mentioned in the video. If you are interested in it, enroll here. [NB: places are limited. I am not really sure, but I think we might be already fully booked. By submitting your interest, however, we will be able to identify the need to repeat the session in a near future]

7 Comments

7 thoughts on “Thinking of deleting your Facebook account?

  1. 10 years ago  

    A very interesting post, about which I shall be writing a few comments on my brand new blog very soon.

    Running some online session would be a great experiment. Count me in.

    About the issue of privacy on Facebook, I have just come across an excellent post on the VizThink blog about “Visualizing the Evolution of Privacy on Facebook”. It introduces a truly superb infographics series produced by Matt McKeon, from the IBM Research’s Center for Social Software, which shows in a most edifying way The Evolution of Privacy on Facebook, by presenting the Changes in default profile settings in 2005, 2006. 2007, November 2009, December 2009 and April 2010.

  2. 10 years ago  

    Thanks for the mention of the meme Cris. @Elisabeth it is interesting that people like me are happy with a totally public Twitter yet uncomfortable with Facebook’s attitude to privacy. I think it’s because everything is simple on Twitter – profile, links, publicy whereas Facebook have repeatedly shifted the privacy goalposts and made settings very difficult to comprehend and manage. I wrote about it here http://francesbell.com/2010/05/15/facebook-privacy-practice-research-and-intention/

  3. 10 years ago  

    I see blogs as a main hub for one’s (reflected) digital ID…where you can link to other spaces where you also co-exist. There are other joint places where rich discussions and connections develop and we should not discard them. Above all, I think this event is bringing more awareness about where we place our content and what kind of content we should associate with our (professional) digital Identity. That, I think, it’s an important discussion to have.

  4. 10 years ago  

    Hi Cristina.

    I thought about that. Really personal and professional are mixed up on facebook and it’s hard to loose the discussions. The links I can always transfer to another place. Not so bad. But I start to believe that blogs are the best place to engage the discussions now. Totally agree.
    Leonor Cristin@

  5. 10 years ago  

    Hi Elisabeth,

    while I was walking to work today I was thinking we might even try to do some online sessions to discuss about it. I’ll talk to Pascal and see if he’s up to it. If so, you’re welcome to join. I’ll advertise it here.

    True – you can follow people’s activity without even taking part in the discussion…but then that is not the true value of the participatory web, is it? You also want to be there and participate in the conversation, as to give your contribution, share your ideas and create new meaning as a result of those exchanges. In the end, it’s a win-win situation if we allow ourselves to be part of it.

    Re mentoring students: absolutely. That’s what I have been trying to do here, and step by step (slower than expected, but there you go, it’s the pace of others we need to respect…) it’s bearing some fruits.

    Re: colleagues: I have experienced both. The worse for me is when people don’t ‘let me in’ in their practice … which otherwise makes it very hard to understand what they do and how I can help them. But I have also experienced the opposite and I have been doing some 1-2-1 meetings with some results. These things take time and one-off training session/course/discussion is probably not enough. I know it’s not! I think there’s some comfort in knowing there’s someone you can always contact to question or simply have your concerns heard…!

  6. 10 years ago  

    Hi Cristina – just when I was looking for help on using Twitter – I have to find an in-house training course 🙁
    As far as privacy goes – Googling a person’s twitter name and using the new google option “updates” means you can follow their latest tweets without even logging in !
    Helping the students become aware of the digital footprint they’re creating is more important than ever… but dragging collegues across the digital divide is getting harder by the minute !
    bises

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