Earlier this year I read an article in the SMH titled ‘I left Facebook because it made me lonely‘ and the concept was something that really resonated with me.
I spend a lot of time on social media for work purposes. To research what other photo organisers are up to, to network with fellow business mums and of course to share and keep you updated. But as highlighted by this article, my interactions with my ‘friends’ was actually making me lonely.
Then my thoughts turned to leaving Facebook myself. I wanted to go old school and engage with my friends in a more real and fulfilling way and more importantly I didn’t want to be a slave to Facebook anymore. But immediately the fears arose and I was scared and unsure that I could actually go through with it and actually leave! Surprisingly for a photo organiser with numerous photo sharing options in my knowledge banks, my main concern was how would I share my photos! Yes I am just like you. More specifically how would I share photos of the kids with my Mum? This is the exact same problem many of our clients have and they come to us for solutions. So I became my own client and got my thinking cap on.
My Mum is 4 hours away and unfortunately she only see’s her only grandchildren (my children) a few times a year. She is completely dependent on Facebook for photo updates to see what we have been up to. Now I will point out that we do talk on the phone at least once a week and the kids love to have a good chat. But she really does love seeing updated photos and I wasn’t about to take that away from her.
So on one hand there was me wanting to move away from the toxicity of Facebook, but there was also my mum eagerly awaiting her next installment of photos to consider.
I thought about just emailing her a batch of photos each week (my smart phone creates a highlights reel automatically) but I knew that Mum’s rural bandwidth and lack of technical know how would be prohibitive. I looked at sharing with her via Forever.com but again that was something I would have to set up for her and teach her to use. This is still an option of course and high on the list of potential solutions but I needed an interim solution.
The other thing nagging at the back of my mind was my Digital Rights. This one too often goes into my too hard basket of decision fatigue. Then one of my APPO colleagues wrote a fantastic and timely article on this topic which I highly recommend you read here. Not that my interim solution avoids compromising my digital rights.
So what WAS my interim solution? One word: Instagram.
Whilst my mum doesn’t have a smart phone nor an Instagram account I am able to load photos to my private Instagram account and then share the URL from Instagram direct to Facebook. This means that mum still sees the photos but I am not spending time ON Facebook reminded of the ‘lifeless’ interactions with ‘friends’ or being distracted by non-essential non-work related Facebook follies.
Of course it would be remiss of me to mention that I do make a Photobook for mum each year so she can enjoy photos of the kids anytime. Our favourite solution with NO digital rights compromised!
Have you ever taken or thought about taking a break from Facebook?
I would love to hear your thoughts.
Have a magical day