When Facebook came out during my sophomore year in college, it was as essential to my college experience as a 40 ounce of Steel Reserve. I reflect fondly on the times when a simple Friend Request from the cute girl down the hall could brighten my day. When a ‘Poke’ felt like an expedited variated of cyber sex. When a post on a high school buddy’s wall was a nostalgic form of catching up.
Granted, I’m much older now and the influx of mediums that allow you to know every intricate detail about someone’s life has become as exhausting as it has unappealing. Facebook is all but dead to me and the app on my phone now only serves as a relic of simpler, more exciting times.
And according to a recent study by the folks at The Pew Research Center, I am far from the only one.
The Pew Research Center surveyed over 4,500 American adults in May and June and found that a significant number of people are slashing the time they spend on Facebook.
Via Pew Research:
Just over half of Facebook users ages 18 and older (54%) say they have adjusted their privacy settings in the past 12 months, according to a new Pew Research Center survey. Around four-in-ten (42%) say they have taken a break from checking the platform for a period of several weeks or more, while around a quarter (26%) say they have deleted the Facebook app from their cellphone. All told, some 74% of Facebook users say they have taken at least one of these three actions in the past year.
Researchers attribute the users backing away from Facebook in large part due to the Cambridge Analytica scandal, in which the consulting firm had collected data on tens of millions of Facebook users without their knowledge or consent. Facebook has also taken a hit from allegations of the platform stifling conservative voices.
Despite the controversies, I will always be grateful Facebook played a wingman for me in my formative years when I was too much of a wimp to connect with girls in person.
[h/t Business Insider]