Photo of Facebook phone screen by Thought Catalog on Unsplash

Facebook is my way of keeping in touch with old friends and making new friends.  This week, the believable congressional testimony of a former Facebook employee has made me rethink my use of the app.

I very rarely see content on my Facebook page that is hateful or promotes bizarre conspiracies.  This is likely because, as a Left/Liberal, if I post anything political it is not ultra conservative or conspiratorial.  This creates a different algorithm for me than others whose pages indicate a different bent. The point is, you receive and share certain types of postings and Facebook continues to send you more of what you’re drawn to:  the good, the bad or the ugly—and makes a lot of money doing that. 

If I quit Facebook, I will miss my Facebook friends.  I have lived in four different states and six different towns in the past 25 years and I don’t like talking on the phone, so Facebook helps me connect to folks I’ve met along the way.  Whether my friends from those places were people I saw nearly every day (like Linda B.K.) or who lived a few doors down (Sharon G., Brenda M.) or met by chance and immediately connected (Joy T., Joan R.), I like being able to check in every so often.  Thanks to some of Facebook’s algorithms, I’ve even been met some of my husband’s high school friends online (Shirley V., Marcia F.R.). 

For now, I’m going to stay with Facebook to see if much-needed changes occur.  We don’t need more hate in this world.  I don’t think it’s too late to improve the ways we talk about and treat each other.  This week I came across the following posting (on Facebook!).  It lifted my spirits, even as I wondered if it were true or just one more made-up story, though an uplifting one.  I hope you read it (click here). 




About Alexis

Alexis Rankin Popik, author of Kiss Me Over the Garden Gate, is an award-winning short story writer whose work has appeared in The Berkshire Review and Potpourri Magazine. She has penned numerous articles about local history that have been published in Connecticut Explored and the University of Connecticut School of Law and The Hartford Seminary publications. A former union organizer, Popik traveled the country educating shipyard workers about health and safety and founded a labor-management health plan before turning to writing fiction full-time. She lives with her husband in New England.
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