why wowt (still) can’t quit facebook
Yes, I know, I know, I said a lot of terrible things about Facebook on this site and on The Shift, the hit late night radio show on which Canadians graciously allow me to have a segment. And every one of those things is true. I would personally tell Zuck that his platform is a sewer of fear and hatred he deliberately whipped up when he broke social media for the rest of humanity in a heartbeat. And yet, after a little over two years of quitting Facebook. WoWT is crawling back for two pretty simple reasons.
First, the Facebook page was simply never removed. It seems that as long as one of the nearly 5,400 members (as of this writing) so much as thought about the page, it would no longer be marked for deletion. This is, in part, how the platform works, by making it as difficult to leave as humanly possible so you pretty much can’t quit it. If the WoWT page is just going to have to stay where it is, why not return and use it for good and spread the words of science, weird tech, and critical thinking rather than letting it rot silently in disinfo hell?
Second, and also very important, is that people are still using Facebook, even if they are using it less for short stretches of time, and the user base is growing older than the platform would like. With the audiences remaining firmly in place, there’s even less incentive to keep silent because once again, you’re ceding ground to the very bad actors about whom you’re trying to warn said audience, and missing out on engagement opportunities to people genuinely interested in weird science and technology. In short, if you can’t beat them, re-join them.
In an ideal world, FaceMetaSpaceTokGram would be a fun platform that amplifies quality news, information, and entertainment, and having a page on it would be a simple decision that didn’t require a complex moral calculus. Sadly, we don’t live in an ideal world and therefore must act accordingly, making tough choices and trying to make the best out of the cards we’re dealt. So I’m not going to spin returning to Facebook as some act of defiance with 4D chess, but simply admit that it’s trying to make the best of the current situation.