Facebook has recently changed the way it handles my news feed. Because of this, it’s likely that I’ll be reading it less and keeping it around just to post things and check up on to make sure I haven’t missed a message.
Here’s why: I don’t equate friendship with following.
When I’m your friend, I want to keep in touch, maybe hang out, and share something with you directly. I don’t want to see your thought stream.
Don’t take it personally because it isn’t personal. When I read stuff online, it’s usually news. I want to learn something new about the fields in which I am excited, not in which you are excited. If it’s not news, it’s an editorial on said fields. If it’s not an editorial, it’s a tweet from someone who might be generating the previous two examples.
I had spent the last 6-12 months whittling down my Facebook news feed to weed out most people’s/most page’s posts from showing up. The little down arrow icon with the “Hide all from xyz” was my best friend.
Then, a week or so ago, all those settings got wiped in favour of a new “acquaintences” system where you specifically select which group you want to read from.
Here’s why it doesn’t work: I have no clue what people are going to say before they say it, so I have no idea who I would like to follow. But, once they’ve said it, I sure as hell know who I would like to unsubscribe from.
This doesn’t mean I don’t want to be their friend, it just means I don’t want to mix their stuff in with mine is all.