Monday, May 25, 2015

Facebook gets its feelings hurt, fills my inbox with sad love notes

When I flitted out of town at the end of last week for a work trip, I didn't consciously make the decision to not log into Facebook while I was gone, but...I didn't log into Facebook while I was gone.

I pride myself in not keeping up with what goes on in the Facebook world, to the extent that I frequently write about it on this blog in a slightly superior and annoyingly repetitive way. But in the interest of cutting the bullshit, I'm the nosiest person I know, and quitting Facebook cold turkey is not a reasonable thing to ask of myself... I log in every day. I often immediately log back out without reading anything (typing that out loud makes it sound even more pathetic than it is, and I thought it was pretty pathetic to begin with), but Facebook seems to care less about my scrolling habits than it does about my logins. It's a quantity over quality relationship we've got.

And it turned out Facebook missed me. After three days, I began getting multiple emails a day in a transparent attempt to entice me to see what I was missing ("missing"). Intrigued by the increasingly desperate attempts to woo me back, I continued to not log in once I was home, just to see what would happen.

Here is a list of the emails I got from Facebook in four days:

Day Three Without Logging In
First email - 12:32 p.m.
Subject line: Becky, you have notifications pending

Second email - 10:27 p.m.
Subject line: Maggie [last name] updated her status.

Day Four
Third email - 6:09 a.m.
Subject line: Maggie [last name] updated her status: "If you defend Josh Duggar today or try..."

Fourth email - 1:33 p.m.
Subject line: Do you know Charlene Yeung, Kate Stokes and 8 others?  
[Answer: No.]

Fifth email - 10:10 p.m.
Subject line: Keshia [last name] updated her status.

Day Five
Sixth email - 5:02 a.m.
Subject line: Becky, you have notifications pending

Seventh email - 12:51 p.m.
Subject line: Keshia [last name] added a new photo to the album Mobile Uploads.

Eighth email - 10:47 p.m.
Subject line: Dorothy [last name] updated her status: "True love: giving the last egg and..."

Day Six
Ninth email - 6:23 a.m.
Subject line: Maggie [last name] updated her status

But then the experiment stopped because...

Tenth email - 6:57 a.m.
Subject line: Lee [last name] shared a link on your timeline.

At this point, curiosity took over and I had to see what Lee posted, so I logged in.

Nine emails.  NINE EMAILS.

Not only that, but nine emails that were staggeringly unappealing in their content. (I originally wrote out descriptions of the body of each email, but then I thought no, it was bad enough for me to read through them, why would I put anyone else through that?)

Again, it is a quantity over quality relationship we've got.

The ironic thing is that getting that many emails did something that no amount of willpower or moral righteousness has been able to: it got me to stop logging in all together.

I sense a longer experiment with this in my future...


  1. hehe can't happen to me... FB (and a book) is my commuting activity :)
    Otherwise i'd probably just fall back asleep on some days - though of course I did not before I had my first smartphone lol................. weird - there it goes again to show how much technology changed my brain already


    1. Ahhh, I just got another email! Even though it's only been a little over 24 hours since I logged in! Facebook needs to take it down a freaking notch. :)

      Ha, yes, how quickly things change!! To think, a few years ago, none of this existed the way it does now, and none of us knew any better so we were perfectly content without! Oh, technology... :)

  2. hahahaha that's hilarious Becky! Love that post!

    1. Haha, I thought you might appreciate this one!! :D

  3. This comment has been removed by the author.

    1. I've set my notifications to "Important notifications about you or activity you've missed" and I've unsubscribed to everything on Facebook. I might get a notice once a week. Maybe this would help?

    2. I'll try that...thanks, Miles! Out of curiosity, do you log in often? I never got any "notification" emails at all (just emails that I had messages, someone had written on my wall, or that I had an event invite) when I was logging in every day. I'm wondering how much of this is me not logging in and how much is Facebook contacting everyone more often these days...

    3. Yeah, I log in daily with occasional exceptions.

    4. Cool...I changed my settings last night, so we'll see what happens now...