After having my Facebook account hacked 3 weeks ago, I made the difficult decision today to start a new account. Despite dealing with my debit card being compromised, the loss of all my photos, 'memories' and chat conversations saved in messenger that are gone forever, I still chose to open a new account. I just put some clear boundaries around how I will use it, even more than I had before as a practicing digital minimalist.
1) I know I don't need it. Not having an account for over 3 weeks made that very evident. But I did miss a pottery group I belong to very much. I also missed seeing photos from my friends and family, those who just had babies and reasons to celebrate. And all the inappropriate things my boyfriend posts each day...
2) I have an apple-generated secure password saved only to my laptop, and I will not be logging in on any other devices but my laptop. Since I don't have a smart phone and can't get apps, having social media on my mobile device is a non-issue for me.
3) I will continue to refrain from social media advertising, and choose to build a 100% organic reach. I will not make business 'pages' for 'likes' or open another ad account. I've learned, you do not own any of that, and I refuse to put effort into building something that can be wiped clean in a second without any warning or a chance to get it back.
4) I will continue to drive traffic to the websites I own, put my content on those sites ONLY--not in Facebook groups or platforms I can never access again if the same thing happens to me in the future. Great news, that means this blog will be updated regularly!!!
5) I will use social media only for social interaction. I want to see your pup. I want to know about your kids accomplishments. I DO want to see what you had for dinner last night. But I will be sure to backup all of my photos that I post on my own devices and not rely on a memory pop up to share them with me.
6) I will most likely decline your join my group invites. I only want to interact socially with the groups I choose, nothing for anyone to take personally, but contributing is something I do find personal. I am happy to help my friends answer questions, solve problems and make important decisions when they seek out my opinion.
As a final thought, being off of Facebook has allowed me to reactivate my blog, put a lot of thought into marketing organically in 2021 and pick up the phone to connect with my friends more intentionally. I really do love having access to people who know better than me when I have questions, and I knew exactly what group on Facebook gave me the best quality advice for my pottery dilemmas, so I no longer need to be a member of hundreds of groups for the same subject matter. I'm also only going to accept friend requests from people I know in 'real life' as I've done before. It took getting shut out completely to recognize the importance of some of these decisions. Hopefully this list of suggestions can help you make some adjustments to your social media practices, too, before it is too late.