Tuesday, October 27, 2015

Facebook-free: Hilal Isler

I'm pleased to introduce you guys to our next Facebook-free interviewee, Hilal Isler. I actually found Hilal through her Medium piece "Why I Quit Facebook (And how it led me to Taylor Swift)." She graciously agreed to participate in this project, so let's get right to her thoughts on the topic.

The basics:

Age: Let's just say my first Hollywood crush was Michael J. Fox.
Location: I am a Midwesterner now. An East Coast-transplant.
Passion: I've been into yoga for about six years. I like to run. I'm kind of a homebody, so the best days are the ones where I can pad around the house, with a cup of tea.
Length of time with FB account: Ten years. I joined in March of 2004.
Amount of time since leaving FB: About a year.

Walk us through your decision to leave. Was it planned? Spur of the moment?

It was planned (a New Year's resolution). Facebook increasingly felt like a bunch of people I barely knew, shouting about things I didn't really care about: people being self-righteous (end animal testing!) or passive aggressive (my haters, I'm not saying who, can kiss my bottom!) or ego-centric (look at how beautiful I am!) or even just inane (here's a picture of a sandwich I'm about to eat). I began to wonder what I was really getting out of it.

Main reason for leaving (in one sentence):

I felt exhausted, trying to keep up with the endless stream of people's opinions.

Tell us what it's been like since leaving. 

It's been nice, like having that one chatty dinner guest finally leave for the night. It's given me more time to read stuff I actually care about. That's been the biggest plus. The second biggest: not having to deal with silly drama. Ignorance is bliss!

What other social media do you still use, and what have you left? 

I am active on Medium, and enjoy the community there a lot. I have a Twitter account that I use mostly to share Medium articles. I don't have too many Twitter followers, so I am sometimes self-conscious about posting. It feels like I'm talking to myself.

How do you socialize now?

I use Google Hangouts a lot. I'm a fan of FaceTime. I also write letters, pen to paper. I like the feel of it. The local post office clerks know me by name, I'm there so often. When I quit Facebook I had 730-something 'friends.' Most of those folks, I'm not in touch with any longer. I think I'm more of a quality-over-quantity person though, generally. So it works out. Some people, I miss. But not most.

What would you say to someone who's considering leaving FB? 

Do it. And join Medium (an oasis). 

Facebook has changed a lot since it was first released. Do you have any predictions about what it'll become in the future? 

A cesspool. Or is that what it is already?

Thanks again, Hilal, for sharing your thoughts with us!

Have you or has someone you know left Facebook? I'd love to feature you here! Please get in touch with me: @rebewithaclause or rebewithaclause [at] gmail [dot] com.
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