Social media if you must

Harm minimisation for corporate social network users is the alternative to harm minimisation for social pariahs


You don’t want unaccountable monopolies mining every intimate detail of your personal relationships and deepest confidences? You don’t want them sharing it even though they promised not to? You don’t want them looking at your junk?

Then don’t use corporate social networks.

OK, in fact, not using them is harder than you’d like, because

  • The No-network effect means that all your friends have forgotten how to manage their life without Facebook all up in their business, i.e. there is a dilemma of collective action here
  • If you log in to one of these accursed things even once you are tracked in perpetuity by the browser cookies wand web beacons and such which hang around you like the stink of dog turd on your shoe, so also need to work out how to wash that off.
  • We are social primates doing bullshit jobs with smartphones in our pockets and we crave social distraction from the relentless grind of late capitalism.

How do you say?

after I post this status, I will be quitting Facebook, except for groups, events, messaging, sharing my take on controversial op-eds, promoting my podcast(s), and seething with jealousy about my friends’ positive life updates.

Remind yourself you do not need this

When using instagram I use protective measures to reduce its addictive effect.

Well put: The 11th Reason to Delete your Social Media Account: the Algorithm will Find You.

Purportedly, Social media and television use — but not video games — predict depression and anxiety in teens

[…] playing video games was not a predictor of either depression or anxiety, which may be because gaming has become more of a social activity. “Compared with their forerunners 15 to 20 years ago, the average video gamer is not socially isolated. It has been shown that more than 70% of gamers play their games with a friend, either physically together or online,” the researchers noted in their study.

The researchers also found some evidence that interacting with media that promoted upward social comparisons was associated with reductions in self-esteem, which in turn was associated with increases in depressive symptoms.

Hmm. To follow up.

Pretend to be on social media but don’t actually bother

80% of my strategy is this. See faking being on social media.

But that means I can get off social media?

Maybe. Scott Locklin summarises the fakebook extraction: Download your fakebook data. Delete your fakebook account. Delete any of your accounts.

Oh wait, your friends keep on using Facebook messenger to organise their lives? FFS, friends.

Practice social surveillance hygiene to reduce harm

You can also reduce the amount of crap that facebook shows you. Alex McClean, How to withdraw from Facebook:

  • Click the Arrow in upper right
  • Select “News feed preferences”
  • Click “Unfollow people and groups to hide their posts”
var unfollowButtons =document.querySelectorAll('div[aria-pressed="false"]'); unfollowed = 0;for(var i=0;i<unfollowButtons.length;i++) {setTimeout(function(element){; unfollowed ++;console.log('Total unfollowed ' + unfollowed + ' out of ' +unfollowButtons.length) }, i*2000, unfollowButtons[i]) }

Roll your own

See DIY social networks.

Archive your social network

Minimise the dependence by having your own backup of your social wossname.

There are GDPR extraction tools built-in, e.g. For Facebook. Timeliner and Perkeep are two different approaches to this.

Weird art projects

safebook is facebook without all the content. Soothing.

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