Mad at Facebook. Should I quit?

Mad at Facebook. Should I quit?
by Ari Siletz


Recent reports of unethical behavior by Facebook (top 10 reasons can be read here ) has started a movement to deactivate accounts on the site. On a lark, I checked out the deactivation page on my account and found that the site gives you a multiple choice on why you want to quit. Three of them apply to me. 


 1. I don't find Facebook useful

2. I get too many emails, invitations, and requests from Facebook.

3. I don't understand how to use Facebook.

Among the other choices were: I have privacy concerns, I don't feel safe on Facebook, I spend too much time using Facebook.

So I dunno. On the one hand Facebook reportedly betrays its own public (and speaking for myself, is more of a nuisance than a help), but on the other hand not supporting the site would help undermine a tool that , when unblocked, is supposedly useful to collective political action in Iran. Bar sar e doraahi, looking for advice.



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Ari Siletz

Thanks Rosie

by Ari Siletz on

I'm still putting up with Facebook, and slowly learning (and unlearning) how to customize the over-information out of it.


Hi Ari,

by Rosie. on

quite belatedly, I wanted to tell you that I'm in the public library now and I just saw a Facebook for Dummies book. I know they are changing the system of the damn thing all the time but I'm sure the book is up to date enough.

Myself I don't use fb, I tried it and it left me cold. Not only didn't I know 'how to use it' and they don't bother to tell you, I also don't want to be (just) the Creature from the Cyber Lagoon, it's already been plenty enough for me. However you are right, I know there is great potential (and demonstrated success) for networking for serious issues if you know how. Frankly, as popular as you are here and as well-situated as you are in the Bay Area, the hub of so much 'Iranican' activity, I'm surprised that people haven't explained it to you already. Many people here use it an awful lot, and I'd expect if anyone would be 'in the loop' it would be you.

Well it's several months now since you wrote this blog and maybe things have shifted for you. Maybe you are now a facebook whiz, maybe you dropped out (but of course you can always re-register...). Still I figured I'd throw in the thing about the book, and while I was at it give you my two or three cents. As you know I never lack cents to give lol.


FB as a romance utility ;-)

by Nur-i-Azal on

I know of one marriage which has occured as a result of fb networking. The parties didn't know each other before getting on there. I know of several similar cases where people have hooked up and met the great flames of their lives on that place. So it can't be all that bad. You certainly can't do that here unless you click on the imvu tab and pay big bucks. On fb it's for free, or as Dire Straits once put it, "Your money for nothin' and your chicks for free" ;-Z)

Of course there are also stories of all kinds of affairs and infidelities having occured as a result of fb as well.



About to deactivate mine

by Monda on

Thank you for this timely blog.

Ari Siletz

Good comments folks

by Ari Siletz on

Recently I saw a clip on IC about early gramaphone recordings of Persian music and tried to use facebook to contact the music researcher living in Iran. No reply! I have found it much easier to find useful contacts through somebody who knows somebody than through Facebook. More trust that way.

Yes, IC is a very different sort of website than Facebook. The payback in info, culture, entertainment and staying in touch with the action in Iran overwhelms the cost in terms of time spent on the site.

Veiled Prophet of Khorasan

Hamsade Ghadimi

by Veiled Prophet of Khorasan on


Very good points and that is what I did. I never put up chit chat on FB. I don't talk about my personal affairs or that stuff. It is useful for networking but you need to show discression. People get carried away and that's the problem. 


hamsade ghadimi


by hamsade ghadimi on

i deactivated from facebook for six months and didn't miss it.  i've been back on it now and barely use it.  i try to avoid putting up information (e.g. pictures) on my profile as i believe that fb will own everything i put up and also that fb would sell my info to telemarketers.  if you want to be connected to other people on political issues, you can set up another account for just that purpose.  you have to change your name slightly like ari s. irani.  :)

Veiled Prophet of Khorasan

Facebook is like Taryak

by Veiled Prophet of Khorasan on


you don't get addicted for just having it. You get addicted if you use it. In addition the right way to use it for netwoking etc is good. The wrong way for yakking is addictive and a waste of time. Anyway I used to hate it with a passion! Now I hate it without a passion!

I use it for networking andgetting messages to places. I don't sit around saying stupid things like "I just had a cup of coffee". 

Seriously for the right uses it is very good. You be the judge of it


ic so different from fb

by humanbeing on

i agree with gavazn. sites like ic are very versatile and flexible, and you learn a huge amount. it's not so much about display as about interaction, and i would say fb is just the opposite in this respect. i don't know why i even compared them in the last comment, perhaps the addiction.



by Gavazn on

I confess I used to be a Facebook addict but decided to close my account as I was getting too busy at university, and I was being pestered by some strange girls. You wont believe the avetars they use some of these girls – just their cleavage, or other body parts (I’m not joking). Real desperate stuff, these girls really mean business and are manipulative. Putting aside the girls, I thought I could make more interesting friends from far away places. But really, after thinking about it I do NOT want to accept a friend request by Raoul from Nicaragua. Come on, I’ll never go there and would not want my place to be a stop over for people I do not really know. Going on is different because you learn about culture and news. But Facebook, the superficiality and the loss in productivity by far outweigh the rest.


it helps organize events                       

 you can keep in touch with friends

perhaps, maybe make new friends (maybe)


HUGE productivity sink (you can't tell me spending 4hrs at work/ college on Facebook is a good thing)

 helps people stalk other people




FB is ambivalent

by Nur-i-Azal on

It is undoubtedly a giant waste of time in one respect. But it has its up sides also. I've made some interesting  friends and contacts. I've also re-connected with long lost relatives our family had virtually lost touch with since the (counter-)revolution in '79. That at least has been a good thing, personally at least. 



Red Wine


by Red Wine on

خدا را شکر که ما پاک از این بچه بازیها هستیم، آخر به چه دردی میخورد این کار ؟! جز وقت تلف کردن،این‌ها به هیچ درد دیگری نمیخورند.

آری جان،خدا شما را برای ما حفظ کند.



It is of limited practical utility

by oktaby on

I use it for getting and spreading news on Iran. Privacy ranks 1 or 2 for me (I'm not sure :), specially because of stated or undeclared practices that include ownership of user data even after s/he leaves. Their ambitions of competing with Google means they need all the info they can get to pattern and mine. It's certainly not worth paying for, which I heard is coming. 



Ari jaan as Betty White said; FB is a HUGE waste of time!

by Anonymouse on

Everything is sacred.


good point sag.

by humanbeing on

in fact, i'm going to shut my computer right now! thanks!



by sag koochooloo on

Its novelty wares off and where do people get the time to do this type of social networking, which I think is really artificial anyway.  I find it amusing is when people say "I have 1000 friends on FB" but they spend most of their lives at the computer. These sites make people addictive.



ari, it's no. 3

by humanbeing on

i don't understand the essence of fb, except for finding old flames from high school and for being stalked by old flames.

i signed up to check up on my teenage daughter, but she blocked me, so i got hooked and stranded. it's only the ic addiction that got me off of fb.

and no. 4, the incompetence. when they changed the profile setup, i felt like they did a lobotomy to my identity. instead of all the things i wrote which i thought were witty at least, a few weeks ago the profile was automated into only things that are linkable. no text, just me tarzan you jane. it was infuriating.

but as you say, it's a social network with potential for mobilizing to positive campaigns.

Darius Kadivar

I've had second thoughts too ...

by Darius Kadivar on

Good points Ari Jaan ...