4 reasons why the younger generation are quitting Facebook
It’s been spoken about for a while now that Facebook numbers are dropping and surprisingly the falling market are those from younger generations. From our monthly social media statistics posts, we have seen the following.
January- April 2013 active users on Facebook was declining
May-August 2013 active users on Facebook slightly increase
September-Present active users on Facebook remain steady
So what are the reasons why people are taking down their profile photos, deactivating accounts and turning their back on Facebook?
1. Too much traffic
Facebook has become an online reality show/diary for people to promote their lives rather than to communicate with others. There’s very little room for real socialising between friends as there is so much going on with irrelevant things bombarding our timelines. Deciphering through games, ads, other network sharing (Instagram), articles and stupid updates (from the people we are “friends” with but don’t really refer to as friends), can be overwhelming.
How many of the people who we are connected to do we actually engage with? Many of us can admit it’s a select few friends we regularly communicate with. Yet while having only 10 real friends may be our real life situation it cannot be our online situation. We need to appear popular, liked and engaged with people from all walks of our lives (even some we have not met). Abandoning Facebook cuts out the obligation to keep track of your friend from grade school, and instead focus on real-life interactions with those you care most about.
2. Being naughty does not get you hired (in the right industry at least)!
We all enjoying reading or hearing about someone’s embarrassing experience where they have posted something incriminating on their Facebook and their parents or boss has seen it and with many cameras in common devices our cheeky party photos can end up online before we have sobered up.
Our fears are warranted with a reported 66% of recruiters are checking you out on Facebook (CNet), and 90% of recruiters say they conduct a Google search on every candidate they meet (BenefitsPro). What we do in our private lives is now connected to our professional lives and in order to be socially connected online we need to jeopardise our privacy.
Privacy settings no longer work at hiding our nights out from those we do not wish to see it especially with Facebook constantly updating AKA making it more difficult for us to be exclusively private. For example, recent privacy setting changes has ensured no user can hide from ‘search’ anymore. Believe it or not but some employers are even requesting applicant’s Facebook password’s (which from mid-2013 has become illegal)!
Therefore fresh out of university, many young social users are opting to clear their name by deleting their Facebook account to increase their chances of hiding their past and getting that job.
3. Nursing broken hearts
Break ups are hard enough and seeing your ex splattered all over your news feed does not make it any easier to heal your broken heart.
Facebook makes dating (both the beginnings and ends) difficult as your personal lives become everyone’s knowledge and once that relationship status changes and profile photos of you together come down the questions and sympathy start rolling in, which just makes it hurt even more. Not only that but as mentioned previously, our Facebook pages becomes an open diary and our relationship history is documented and constant reminiscing of the happier days can be detrimental to our break up recovery.
While Facebook can bring together and maintain long lost relationships it also encourages us to keep some relationships open that should naturally be closed, done, finito! Whether that’s an ex-boyfriend/girlfriend, an ex-friend, or just a former acquaintance or schoolmate that you haven’t seen in the better part of a decade cut the cord, let it go.
Take one of these twice a day after a meal and do not go on Facebook!
Our personal social networks are treated as our own brand and we work to make sure that brand is well presented , has a good following, is well liked and active. We represent our brand (ourselves) in the most positive light we can and hopefully better than our other competitors (followers). When we have a negative life experience such as loss of job, end of relationship, falling out with a friend, failing an exam (the list goes on) our brand gets hurt, our ego’s take a hit but still the show must go on and we continue the façade of our brand. Our online curated lives get in the way of our real life.
This is not healthy behavior. We get obsessive, we compare our lives to others, we feel like we are missing out and when our lives don’t measure up and we feel unhappy and develop psychological anxiety. This can stem from the most simple things, such as seeing those in relationships, new jobs or even out drinking on a weekend when you stayed home. Our Facebook can make us unhappy with ourselves. Seeing your friends’ lives, curated to include only the most flattering tidbits, makes any perceived failure even more detrimental to your own well-being, a reason many Millennials are opting out of interacting online at all.